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U.S. Senate delegation assesses Liberia

By James Akoi
U.S. Senate delegation meeting with President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
U.S. Senate delegation meeting with President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf

( delegation of seven U.S. Senators, led by Lindsay Graham, is in Liberia to assess the status of the country’s development progress.

The American Senatorial delegation, along with senior business leaders and other world figures, led by U2 Lead Singer, philanthropist and founder of the One Campaign, Bono, arrived in Liberia Monday, August 26, 2013.

U2 is an Irish musical group that has sold over 140-million albums and has won numerous awards.

While in the country, the Senators and the One Campaign delegation will take stock of the progress made, learn about Liberia’s development, and identify ways to support the country’s continued progress.

The delegation includes the Chairman of the Senate Sub-Committee on Africa, Senator Chris Coons, Coca Cola Company Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Muhtar Kent, and former White House Chief of Staff.

Other members of the American delegation are the President of Viacom Entertainment, Tom Freston, and former U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice.

Prior to the high-power American delegation’s visit to Liberia, Mrs. Rice was in the country in 2006 when she attended the first inauguration of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.

Liberia’s Information Minister, Lewis Brown, said: “Ten years ago, Liberia was said to be exporting conflict to the region. Today, the country is working towards sustaining regional peace and stability.”

“Recently, Liberia sent a batch of peacekeepers to Mali. I thank the government and people of the United States for the continued progress being made by our country,” Minister Brown said.

According to an Executive Mansion release, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and members of the Cabinet will meet with the visiting delegation to outline Liberia’s Agenda for Transformation, the National Development Plan for the next five years.

The release also noted: “The group will meet to also look for ways in which to partner with the U.S. Government, the One Campaign and the Private Sector to support Vision 2030.”

“Liberia demonstrates how U.S. foreign assistance to a dynamic, reforming government can have a powerful impact,” the release further noted.

“Since the end of its civil war, Liberia has received assistance from USAID and the Department of Defense to maintain peace and promote development.”

“Recently, Liberia has become a priority country for the U.S. Government’s new Power Africa Initiative. The country is eligible for a Millennium Challenge Compact that will channel support to essential road and power projects,” the release added.

The release also said: “Hosting such high-powered delegation, after ten years of peace, shows how far Liberia has come.”


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