Liberia News: Boakai To Rekindle Hope

Liberia’s new President, Joseph Nyumah Boakai has assured his fellow compatriots that he has come to rekindle their hope and to reposition the citizens on their national pathway amid uncertainties.

Delivering his inaugural address on Monday,January 22, 2024, at the Capitol Building, the Liberian leader said during the just-endedpolitical campaign, the state of the nation was laid bare adding, “Many words were spoken. Angry words were spoken. The experts uncovered for us cogent analyses of our national condition. We can no more attempt to bury our heads in the proverbial sand.”

The President noted, “We see hard times, we see dysfunction, we see culture of impunity, we see corruption in high and low places. It is these and similar conditions that we have come to RESCUE. But we come with false assurance to no one. Our plan to fix the ills we are inheriting must go together with realistic expectations. We will act in the first hundred days of our Administration, and then diligently pursue our rescue mission.”

Speaking about his presidential ambition, President Boakai said, “I began my quest for the presidency because something seemed wrong with us Liberians and the leadership of our country. Rather than the positives, we were accentuating the negatives about our country and each other. We were initiating false starts, building on poor foundations. We were deepening our differences, creating new social fault lines. Inclusive and accountable governance was at an all-time low. We created a culture of unfinished business, and engaged in ad hoc undertakings, making this behavior the “new normal.” We were chevalier about the rule of law. We lowered standards in many domains of our common life as a people. We seem to have lost our way, lost hope.”

Assuring Liberians of his administration’s six-year journey, the Liberian leaders noted, “I have come to rekindle hope, to reposition us on our national pathway. I have come to remind us that though the accident of our births has made us a diverse people, we must employ our citizenship, our Liberian citizenship to make us a united people, for only a united people can build a nation.

On his plan for the next six years, President Boakai said, “We must refocus our political energies. With the electoral campaign now behind us, I embrace all my fellow Liberians at home and in the diaspora. One of the good things brought to light by the campaign, and facilitated by social media, is that Liberians from all walks of life had a chance to engage in a “national conversation” about our past, our present, and our prospects. We learned together what is wrong with our country, and hopefully what is right as well.”

“Let us now recalibrate, let us “restore the years the locusts have eaten” by accentuating the positive about our country and our fellow citizens. As we think, love, and build Liberia, let us take this state of mind to the business of national healing and reconciliation, both the old and new emerging social cleavages. Let us restore inclusivity, transparency, and accountability to governance at all levels of our society, including government,” the Liberian Chief Executive noted.

Speaking to Liberians in general, President Boakai added, “We must discourage the culture of unfinished business, doing things in a haphazard and unserious manner. We must restore hope to ourselves, individually, and as a collectivity. We must also restore dignity and integrity to public service-livable remuneration and pension schemes to civil servants and foreign service government workers. We must restore respect for the rule of law, and respect for officers of the law across our three branches of government.”

Boakai said enforcing the rule of law and public safety is vital to the ARREST agenda for overall national development. “Our government pledges to improve transparency, accountability, and openness to promote good governance. In addition, access to justice to preserve social, economic, and political rights and freedoms and long-term stability in the country will be a top priority of our government.”

“This historic vote by the people has given me the mandate to serve as the 26th President of the Republic of Liberia.  This mandate makes me the president of all Liberians within our territorial confines and the diaspora at large. The elections are over. Partisanship must give way to nationalism and inclusive governance,” he noted.

Among other things, President Boakai added, “We stand here today at the intersection of Liberia’s past and its destiny. This was a country founded in the early 19th Century on the idea of liberty. It was conceived as an experiment in liberal democracy: a destination of refuge for oppressed peoples of color to come and live in freedom and the pursuit of happiness. The various streams of the population would meet in a fraternal embrace to build their country based on equality, equal access to justice, and equal opportunity. It was intended to be the city on the hill on the African Continent.”

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