8 Heads of State, Others to Attend Weah’s Inauguration

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African heads of state to grace Weah's inauguration (clockwise from left): Jacob Zuma, South Africa; Ernest Bai Koroma, Sierra Leone; Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria; Nana Akufo-Addo, Ghana; Ali Bongo Ondimba, Gabon; Faure Gnassingbe, Togo; Alpha Conde, Guinea; and Jose Mario Vaz, Guinea Bissau

By Alvin Worzi and Hannah N. Geterminah

Jarvis Witherspoon, Chief of Protocol, has confirmed the impending arrival of eight African heads of state, a special delegation of the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA), and special envoys from the U.S., France and the United Nations (UN).

The African heads of state include Jacob Zuma, South Africa; Faure Gnassingbe, Togo; Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria; Alpha Conde, Guinea; Nana Akufo-Addo, Ghana; Ernest Bai Koroma, Sierra Leone; Jose Mario Vaz, Guinea Bissau; and  Ali Bongo Ondimba, Gabon.

President-elect and vice President-elect, George Manneh Weah and Jewel Howard-Taylor, will be inaugurated on Monday, January 22, 2018 as the 24th elected president of Liberia.
Witherspoon made the disclosure yesterday at the Information Ministry press briefing in Monrovia where he disclosed that several former African heads of state, members of the diplomatic corps, and members of the 53rd and 54th National Legislature, government officials, soccer players among others will grace the inauguration.

He said more names from across the world are expected to confirm their attendance at the inauguration over the weekend. The inauguration, which will be held at the Samuel K. Doe (SKD) Sport Complex in Monrovia, is the first of its kind in Liberia, according to Witherspoon.

He said as a security control measure, the CDC will distribute about 10 to 15,000 entrance tickets, while there will be about 5,000 tickets distributed among government officials, Civil Society Organizations, diplomatic corps, former government officials and other citizens of Liberia to attend the program.

“No one will be allowed inside the sports complex without a ticket or invitation,” he added.

He said the city will be busy beginning tomorrow January 19, 2018 and called on the citizens to respect the event and obey the security for a peaceful transition, especially considering the number of foreign guests.

Witherspoon said there will be TV screens setup within the various communities across the fifteen sub-divisions of Liberia to enable the public to witness the historical event.
Commenting on the budget, Witherspoon said the transition team, from the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) and the present government, approved the amount of US$900,000.

According to him, the money is being provided by the government and is currently being used for the hosting of guests and the entire event.

For his part,  Abraham Kromah, Deputy Police Inspector General for Operations, said the RIA highway will be closed from 7am to 7pm on Monday, January 22, 2018.

He also indicated that no heavy equipment, including vehicles, will be allowed on the Roberts International Airport (RIA) highway, because of the many important guests that will be using the highway.

Kromah said there will be no loud music allowed at the SKD and its surroundings, due to the presence of foreign presidents, former presidents and other important guests.

According to Kromah, no alcoholic beverage or other goods will be sold at the stadium during the inauguration, warning the public to avoid any situation that will create embarrassment for the state and people of Liberia.

He said taking into consideration the importance of the occasion, those living in the nearby communities are advised to avoid using the major roads leading to the complex.

To avoid long queues, Kromah said entrance to the stadium will be opened by 6 am to the public, with serious security measures.

Immediately following the swearing-in ceremony, an inaugural luncheon will he hosted at the same venue from 1:30pm to 2:30pm. At 7:00pm, the inaugural ball in honor of President George Weah and Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor will also take place at the Executive Pavilion on Ashmun Street.

Meanwhile, over 20 international and local media groups are expected to provide coverage for the inauguration.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Liberian leaders have no shame!!!!!

    Lately, I have seen President Sirleaf running around like a chicken with its head cut-off hurriedly dedicating last minute projects: some finished and some unfinished with her name inscribed on all of them. Why will she selfishly take credit for all the new edifices constructed in Liberia under her administration when it took team work to accomplish these tasks? There are other important members of her government that could be represented at these last minute dedication ceremonies like V. P. Boakai & others … …….but time will tell.

    Is it because all these foreign leaders are coming for George Weah inauguration and she wants to show off her accomplishment? These African leaders would not be impressed because Monrovia still looks like a big old village in comparison to Capital Cities of these foreign African Leaders.

    President Sirleaf knew that after 12 years, her time as president will be over. Liberia will be electing a new leader. Why is the Executive Mansion, the seat of government, still not ready? It is a shame to have a new president inaugurated and the new president has no office to work in.

    These head of states and foreign dignitaries will come and see how Liberia, the oldest African Republic, is so undeveloped? A country where its population lives on $1.25 a day and 80% of its population is unemployed.
    .
    Thank God the Chinese rebuilt Samuel Kanyon Doe Stadium just in time for this unprecedented inauguration. However, SKD Stadium is large enough to host the big crowd, but it lies on the out-sketch of Monrovia: will government provide public transportation for the common people who voted to witness this special inauguration? Also, the unpredictable Monrovia weather could be a determining factor for outdoor activities. Where is the contingency plan for bad weather forecast on the day of the inauguration?

    When I was growing up in Monrovia in the sixties, Tubman had only three major places for large events: The Monrovia City Hall; The Executive Pavilion, and the Old Executive Mansion. Next, Tolbert built the OAU Conference Center in Virginia in 1979. Since then, not a single large indoor public building has been built to host large conferences in Liberia. No wonder why the hotel industries are making all the profits to host large government conferences in Liberia.

    We can to better to upgrade our facilities to host large indoor gatherings, just in case of increment weather and the proper accommodation of foreign dignitaries.

    Monrovia cannot always continue to look like a big old village after 170 years of existence. Our leaders have no shame!!!!

    • @Alpha Conner, why wouldn’t she? It was her who personally traveled to these countries talked with their leaders to invest in Liberia. It was her administration who put in the work and brought in these investors. She’s showing the Liberian people all these projects she was involved with, since most people criticize her for doing nothing. She is embedding her stamp in these projects to where credit is due, and it’s her Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. They next administration has to complete these projects, and create their own recognition by inviting more private investors, and establishing their own identity.

  2. I just hope that this is not an editorial because if that is so, in my humble view it would be a little bit unfair to the outgoing president. ”Monrovia can not always continue to look like a big old village, after 170 years of existence.” But, ”These heads of state and foreign dignitaries will come and see how Liberia is so undeveloped,….” Na who cause am? Na madam Serlief alone? I think, no. This is an issue of collective responsibility for all Liberians. It is said that, ”As you lay your bed so shall you lie on it.” It is good Liberians are making positive amends, through democratic means. Madam came and laid a good foundation, for a smooth takeoff, by a young and vibrant blood. Senator Weah has got all the energy. with the right people, having the right mindset, around him, I have no difficulty to believe that Liberia will move forward. That is what we need now.
    May God bless the New President. Long live Liberia, the land of liberty, peace and prosperity for the people of Liberia.

  3. Most of the guests know the looks of Liberia prior to and after the last few decades. Liberia’s democracy does not compel the entry of any distinguished personalities for its festivities or activities. They are optional even if invitations are extended. All incumbents have their own legacy to show as long as they do not interfere with the silent peaceful transition. Let us wait until the new Administration comes in to Government when the people can address their issues because this (her) actions will be soon long past. The inauguration is in sight. Do not reply my box. Still spying trouble makers.
    …………….gone to 57% silent majority.

  4. Okay, it’s a fantastic idea for foreign dignitaries to witness the induction of Mr. Weah and his team into office on January 22, 2018. We wish them well as they travel to Liberia. The hope is that the induction ceremony will be carried out without any unforseen issues.
    There is a concern though. Some of the invited Heads of State have problems at home. One of them is the gentleman from South Africa, Mr. Jacob Zuma. It’s been reported that Mr. Zuma used his country’s scarce resources to renovate his private residence. Also within his own party, the African National Congress (ANC), calls are being made for Mr. Zuma to step down. But, Mr. Zuma is stubbornly defiant. He will not step down under pressure whether hell breaks lose. Another gentleman who was extended an invitation is the Equitorial Guinea strongman, Mr. Teodoro Obiang. Mr.Teodoro Obiang is aloof, very dictatorial and defensive. Mr. Obiang came to power in his country over a quarter of a century ago. In political matters, there’s no Equatorial Guinean man, woman or child who can challenge him, unless she or he signs a death knell. Many more unmentioned foreign invitees have their load of issues, but let’s move on.

    It is scary to say the least that Weah has invited mostly African dictators to his induction ceremony. So Weah has done nothing wrong to invite African leaders, some of whom are hardcore dictators if not all of them. But the fear is whether our man Weah, a very young guy who’s about to learn the ropes of leadership will listen to all or some of the older African dictators. The older leaders may say to Weah, “do this or do that”. Well, what happens if our man Weah “does this or that”? Keep in mind that Weah has to consolidate power. When he consolidates power, Weah will certainly do “this or that”!
    For me, “doing this or that” is tricky and tempting.

    National Reality:
    Jobs are scarce in Liberia. If Weah and team do “this or that”, they will undoubtedly turn a blind eye on the issue of unemployment. That will be the beginning of trouble. You see, the older leaders have messed up black Africa. That is why there are so many problems on the continent. Weah and team seem to be a winning team. Of course, it’s too early yet. But for sure, the Weah-Taylor team should not be blackmailed in doing “this or that”.

  5. Dear man of God, Apostle Saide,

    Please show respect for God.
    Whenever you write, use upper case letters when you refer to the creator.

    (1) Lord, not lord.

    (2) God, not god.

    (3) Jesus and not jesus.

    (4) Savior/Saviour if you’re referring to Jesus Christ……..Upper case letters.

    Finally, Apostle your name is “Saide”. The “S” in Saide must be upper cased. Not saide.

    Yes, Jesus Christ is Lord and the greatest of all Kings. If you cast your burden on Him, you’ll be in good hands, better than Allstate!
    Thanks for your advice, Apostle Saide.
    Have a good night man.

    • Wait now mr man i can not talk my thing and you telling me all kind of thing leave it to Jesus Christ he know who I am I am not saying this because of ed. I know I. Don’t know much ok

  6. The Leaders in the past Government of Liberia were not farsighted enough to take development as they traveled in various advanced countries in the world. Space was not provided for constructing a building like the Monrovia City Hall to accommodate people for a big program a large number of people. This is shame for us Liberians and I hope the new incoming government will be farsighted to development. You see RIA is a good name but it does not resemble in structure for Liberia Rev. Edward . T Togba from Garnga

  7. Thank-you for your comments but let us pray for the Almighty God to work on the Weah’s government to our country is Liberia and we can be like other countries around the world

  8. Thank “GOD”!! for our own peace and loving, our reach country, our Mother land; Mama Liberia, the country with all the natural resources in the world but, we stilled have 80% of the country’s populations unemployed; and 20% living on less then $1.50cents a day. God Almighty himself had decided to end the suffering of the Liberians beginning this 2018 with a very powerful, peaceful, caring, loving and respectful son of this soil; Emb. George M. Weah and including his Vice president J. H. Taylor; another who will also help to minimize corruptions and give it the zero tolerance that the others couldn’t do as they promised. Lets pray for a better Liberia for the futures of our children and generations to come. We the citizens ourselves need to help this Government to make Liberia a better home for our generations and ourselves.

  9. I can really understand what I we received ticket from is this is a talent show.i have never seen that before.u people mean,the people with shall not be excepted right.there is enough space why give the people this is unfair.i try to get the ticket but I not.if i try to in noway i be out side.

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