The New Dawn (Monrovia)

18 October 2012

Liberian Women Re-Assure Ellen

Women here have re-assured President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of explicit confidence in her leadership in the wake of recent criticism of her administration by co-Nobel Laureate Ms. Leymah Gbowee.

"We say it was wrong for Ms. Gbowee who enjoyed your confidence and had unhindered access to you, to attempt to cast a shadow not only on your person but also on the great image you have tried to rebuild for a Country known in the past decade for war and destruction..."

They described the Gbowee's criticism as unfortunate, noting the country's traditional and cultural values require not just respect to her as a person but to the office of the Presidency.

"We believe in freedom of speech, the tenets of good governance and that collectively, we hold the conscience of society and can speak to issues when need be and at the appropriate forum", the statement further read.

The women told President Sirleaf that when they look back to where God has brought the country from and it is now, "words are inadequate to say that you have indeed brought pride to womanhood in Liberia, Africa and the World."

They noted the President's many accomplishments in steering the affairs of state, including numerous academic, regional and global awards such as the Nobel Peace Prize, which all manifested her good works, saying "We believe the best is yet to come and that you will continue your good works for our country, Africa and the world at large."

They also reaffirmed their support for the President's vision for Liberia and her hope for the future of Liberian children especially education for the girl child, peace, reconciliation and both in Liberia and the subregion.

"We avail ourselves of the opportunity to dialogue with you and relate with other national stakeholders in the government and civil society to ensure continued engagement for peace, reconciliation and social harmony. We, the women and children of Liberia do not take the peace we enjoy for granted. We neither take our freedom as given nor our fame and fortune as only deserving of us", they said and added,

"We take Liberia and have Liberia as the only home where we as women in leadership and at all levels must live and work to make it a hundred times more beautiful. We hold our hands and heads high, and plough our spades for genuine peace and reconciliation in our beloved Land of Liberty."

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