Monrovia, Liberia – Former United States Ambassador to Liberia has lauded the government and people of Liberia for the show of support to her tenure as Ambassador for the last four years.
Madam Christine Elder said such support was the catalyst for deepening ties between Liberia and the US, which resulted to the success of her Mission.
Now back home in Washington DC, the United States, former Ambassador Christine Elder’s statement was contained in a very passionate and an emotional farewell video message released on Wednesday March 25, 2020.
She said in her statement, “To my many friends in Liberia, I send you greetings from Washington, D.C. On Monday, the U.S. Embassy shared news with you, the Liberian people that my tour as U.S. Ambassador to Liberia had concluded. As the Embassy statement noted, I have been deeply honored to serve in this role for almost 4 years. It was a gift to be asked by my government to extend beyond the traditional 3-year assignment, ultimately having served in Liberia longer than any U.S. ambassador in 35 years. I was touched by your comments about my departure, and I wanted to offer my appreciation and some remarks in return”.
Since leaving Liberia over the last few days, many Liberians have been speculating about the Health of the former US Ambassador, a situation that also claimed her attention in the farewell video message.
Ambassador expressed gratitude to Liberians and said she was very moved by the expressions of concern for her health. She added, “I am quite well, but over the past 15 years, I have had 3 surgeries on my lungs. With the closure of international air routes, the U.S. government and I decided that this was the right time to transition the leadership of our Embassy, which had been anticipated for this May or June. The Embassy’s very experienced Deputy Chief of Mission, Alyson Grunder, will serve as Chargé d’affaires until there is a new U.S. Ambassador”.
Speaking about her love for Liberia, Amb. Elder said “Liberia became like a 2nd home to me, and you, the Liberian people, welcomed me as a sister. It has been the highlight of my career, and the honor of a lifetime, to have had a small role in strengthening the unique relationship between the United States and Liberia. I am deeply appreciative of the warm friendship extended to me by the Liberian people”.
Christine Elder said she has already expressed thanks to Liberian Leader George Manneh Weah and the Foreign Minister on Saturday, March 21, 2020 and hoped to return to Liberia on a personal visit in the future express thanks and say goodbye to Liberians in person.
“Until then, I wish to extend my deep appreciation for all of our work together to President Weah, to former President Sirleaf, to the government, members of opposition parties, in particular the young political leaders, to the Members of the Legislature, the Judiciary, the security sector, the business community, the United Nations family, the Dean and colleagues in the diplomatic corps, traditional and faith leaders, and our many, many partners and friends in civil society, most especially the media” she noted.
She then lauded the U.S. Embassy team for their tireless efforts, alongside Liberians, to protect public health and stability, to promote economic growth, and strengthen civil society.