New Democrat (Monrovia)

13 December 2012

Liberia: Weah Takes Ellen's Job

Photo: allAfrica.com
George Weah

After weeks of speculation that he would not accept a position from the government, former football legend George Manneh Oppong Weah has finally taken up an offer from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as Liberia's newest Peace Ambassador.

Speaking at the end of the national visioning conference in Gbarnga, Bong County, the leader of the opposition Congress for Democratic Congress (CDC) said it was a great honour and privilege for him to accept the appointment as ambassador peace for a country he loves.

"The common ground that we share is that we are all Liberians and want to see our nation grow and develop to its fullest potential. We can achieve this through peace and reconciliation," Ambassador Weah told conference delegates.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf recently appointed Mr. Weah to the post which was relinquished by her fellow Nobel peace laureate, Leyma Gbowee, who accused the government of corruption and nepotism.

Speculations have been rife that Weah would not accept an appointment in the government because he and his CDC boycotted last November's runoff election, claiming to have been cheated in the first round.

In his speech, Weah noted that as a man of peace, he would endeavour to seek the cooperation of all Liberians and international community to ensure lasting peace and tranquillity in the country.

"The roles of traditional leaders, religious leaders, civil society organisations, students and youth organisations, women group, UNMIL, the Armed Forces of Liberia, former warlords, former child soldiers, market women, pem pem boys and the disables amongst others, are crucial in the reconciliation process," he said.

He emphasized that his commitment to the youths and reconciliation process is unwavering. "I have been a partner in peace for a long time and am glad to stand side by side with fellow citizens and help to forge for a common ground. There is more to unite us than separate us. Liberia is ready to move forward to a brighter future and we can all get there through peace, unity and reconciliation," he assured.

He stated that though it is not an easy task to reconcile the country, he gave the assurance that his task to promote peace and reconciliation would be a success with the commitment and cooperation of all.

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