Joint Transitional Team Sets into Motion -Pres. Weah Pushes for “Seamless” Process -Pres.-elect Boakai Urges Best Performance

MONROVIA: The current refrain amongst historians and political pundits is this: “Ellen broke the record, Weah consolidates it.” In January 2018, when former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf turned over the baton of national political authority to then President-elect George Manneh Weah, it was a watershed in 73 years, the last time being in 1945 when outgoing President Edwin J. Barclay (though of the same True Whig Party) turned over to incoming President William V.S. Tubman. January 2024, President Weah will cement the democratic tradition of peaceful political transition the rarest of way as far as Liberia’s body politic is concerned, the first defeated incumbent in over 100 years to peacefully turn over to rival party. All other previous transitions were products of death of the incumbent president or outgrow of political chaos. But Friday, November 24, was scene of behold, a consummation of history of histories, when two transitional teams – one from the incumbent and the other from the incoming that were in bitter political elections days ago – sat in one room to plan together the process of transition. Both the Incumbent President and President Elect delivered moving remarks to the attendants that were later merged into one team. The Analyst reports.

As the incoming and outgoing governments of Liberia presented their respective transitional teams to jointly execute the transition that follows a highly contentious presidential runoff, the President elect, Ambassador Joseph N. Boakai implored the consolidated transitional team, called the Joint Presidential Transition Team (JPTT) to work in a way that will set the pace for effective governance, urging them to work so that the country will achieve a peaceful transition.

Former Vice President and President elect Boakai said his team was prepared to participate in the transitional exercise, knowing fully well that they are Liberians whose interest should be to build Liberia.

“It is very clear that whatever we do should be for the benefit of the country and the people of Liberia,” the incoming President said.

In his brief remarks at the Executive Mansion where the joint transition teams were mutually presented by both outgoing and incoming Presidents George Manneh Weah and Joseph N. Boakai, the President-elect expressed confidence in the competence of members of his team to do the work they are assigned to do.

He encouraged the transitional team to work for the people’s interest to set the pace for good governance in the country.

He told the team that Vice President-elect Jeremiah Koung would deputize for him on the transitional team in his absence. He admonished the team to work in the atmosphere of harmony and mutual respect to achieve the objective of the transition.

Amb. Boakai praised the outgoing president for his role that landed the country on peaceful footing, saying whatever he does is for the good of the country.

“We stand ready to work,” he said, and added, “I admonish the joint transitional team to work together for the common good of the country.”

Earlier, President-elect Boakai designated Atty. Kofi Woods to name and introduce other members of his team, including UP National Secretary General Amos Tweh as member of the Secretariat. He also named former Telecommunication Minister, Cllr.  Cooper Kruah and Mr. Lusinee Kamara on the team of the incoming administration.

The rest of the members of the team members on the secretariat are Louise Kpoto, MacDella Cooper, Dr. Urey Yakpawolo, Samuel Kofi Woods, II, Dr. Augustine Konneh, Boima Kamara, Rev. Luther Tarpeh, and Darbah Vapilah.

Others are Edward Appleton, John Morlu, Jr., Sam Gaye, Mr. Sarh Johnny, Noah Zawu Gibson, Sara Beyslow Nyanti, Amara Konneh, Gbemie Horace-Kollie, Wilmot Paye and Jacob

Smith.

President Weah Calls for Honesty

Earlier in remarks, outgoing President George Manneh Weah said a successful transition would not only shape the trajectory of our country, but it will also possibly influence peace, security, stability and future prosperity.

“In this regard that I am confidence that our transitional team as well as those of the incoming leadership which is the best practices, possess the competences and skilled required for the country’s transition,” President Weah said.

He noted that the presidential elections stands as a testament for the democratic progress “we have achieved as a nation”.

President Weah indicated that the conduct of the elections were the first postwar elections solely organized by the people and the government of Liberia has won international acclamation far and wide.

“We have reinforced our credentials as a mature democracy that is governed by strong institutions with respect to rule of law,” he said.

The outgoing president said Liberia’s democratic achievement has set a new agenda and standard not just for Liberia, but for Africa and the global community.  Our gracious concession to the president-elect has gained international admiration and this monumental achievement is not for one political institution but for the entire Liberia.

President Weah then ordered all ministries, and agencies and corporations of government to cooperate with the transitional team as they work for the country.

He mandated Foreign Minister Dee-Maxwell Kemayah to introduce government’s members of the team which include  the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dean of the Cabinet, Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Minister of Justice, Minister of National Defense, and Minister of State for Presidential Affairs.

Others include the Minister of Internal Affairs, Minister of Mines and Energy, Minister of Health, Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia, Economic Advisor to the President, Legal Advisor to the President, National Port Authority, National Social Security and Welfare Corporation, Liberia Maritime Authority, Liberia Revenue Authority, Director General of the General Service Agency, Liberia Electricity Corporation, amongst others.

President Weah further said the first meeting of the JPPT, and all that will follow, “carry immense significance for our democratic legacy and national history.”

According to him, a successful transition, professionally orchestrated, would not only shape the trajectory of Liberia but will also positively influence the peace, security, stability, and future prosperity.

He indicated that he was of the highest confidence that the representatives of the incoming leadership on the JPPT possess the best qualities and meet the high standard of competence and skills required to steer the country smoothly from one shore to the other – from the outgoing administration to the incoming administration.

President Weah also weighed in on the outcome of the 2023 General and Presidential Elections as a living testament to the democratic progress Liberia has achieved as a nation.

The conduct of the elections, he noted, the first postwar elections solely organized by the Government and People of Liberia, has won international acclaim from far and wide for their excellence.

He emphasized how his administration is proud in reinforcing Liberia’s credentials as a mature democracy that is governed by strong institutions, with respect for the rule of law.

He told the JPTT members that his administration’s democratic achievements have set a new and enviable standard, not just for Liberia but for Africa and the global community.

“By graciously conceding and congratulating President-Elect Boakai ahead of the final tally, we have also earned global recognition and admiration,” he pointed out.

“This monumental achievement is a victory not just for one political entity but for all Liberians and Liberia as a whole,” he added.

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