“We’ll Respect the People’s Will”

With less than three weeks to the conduct of Liberia’s 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections, President George Manneh Weah has assured the world leaders at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the United States of America that the will of the Liberian people will be respectedduring these elections.

Addressing world leaders Wednesday September 2023 at the general debate of the Seventy-eighth (78th) Regular Session of the United Nations General Assembly held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, USA, the Liberian President  noted, “As a strong believer in democracy let me reiterate my call for the respect of constitutional governance and respect for the will of the people.”

Weah informed the world body that the Government of Liberia has taken all necessary measures to ensure free, fair, transparent, peaceful, inclusive and credible elections. He disclosed that the National Elections Commission has been strengthened to ensure that it operates without undue influence.

President noted, “In addition, political parties have committed themselves to a nonviolent electoral process by signing the 2023 Farmington River Declaration, which obligates all actors in the elections to continue to promote peace.”

In reminding the world body of his country’s achievements, Weah noted, “Five years ago, on the occasion of my first address to this august assembly, we informed you of a peaceful democratic transition that had just taken place in Liberia. With your support, and that of our friends, we have kept the democratic torch burning. We have maintained peace and security. We have protected human rights and the rights of the media to operate peacefully and freely. The Liberian people have enjoyed the full exercise of their constitutional rights. The country is well on course of consolidating its democratic credentials.”

The Liberian leader further noted, “I am pleased to inform you again that in a few weeks, Liberians will go to the polls, in keeping with the Liberian constitution to vote in our scheduled Presidential and Legislative Elections. The October polls will mark the fourth peaceful general elections in Liberia since the end of the civil war in 2003.”

“This 78th Session is taking place at a time when my country is preparing for the first elections since the withdrawal of the UN Peacekeeping presence from Liberia. The October 10 Elections is an opportunity to sustain the gains made in our reconstruction and development processes,” Weah told world leaders Wednesday at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

On other global issues, the Liberian President intimated, “Our world is also under threat from natural calamities, as seen with extreme climate conditions globally. It is therefore our collective responsibility to urgently prioritize addressing the climate crisis as we strive to reach a target of 64 percent reduction in carbon emission. There remains a need to prioritize support to countries, including Liberia that has the capacity to use its biodiversity in building resilience against the changing climate.”

He pointed out that the United Nations has always been confronted with challenges and has withstood the test of timenoting, “This too will come to pass. I wish to thank the Secretary-General for his New Agenda for Peace. Liberia is in solidarity with these bold steps needed to address the triple crises of disruption, biodiversity loss and pollution destroying our planet. Liberia is hopeful that concrete global actions towards the attainment of the goals of the Common Agenda will be achieved.”

Weah added that Liberia’s journey is best captured in the spirit of unity, resilience and ambition adding, “Together, through collaboration and shared purpose, we can and must shape a world that upholds the rights and dignity of every individual.”

“In alliance with our United Nations Family, Liberia remains resolute in its commitment. We pledge to protect our planet, promote peace, and prevent conflicts. We vow to ensure sustainable financing, and amplify our partnerships, reflecting our shared determination for a brighter future,” the Liberian leader said.

“We must also accept that this can only be achieved through collaboration between and among Governments, non-government stakeholders and other partners; which will guarantee transparency, accountability, good governance, and the inclusion of all citizens in the decision-making process,” he noted.  

Among other things, President Weah concluded, “Let us remind ourselves that our collective strength lies in our unity. Together, we can overcome any challenge, rebuild trust, promote peace, religious tolerance, uphold the tenants of democracy, rule of law, support women participation, encourage diplomacy and strengthen global solidarity.”

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