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Liberia Somersaults: Now Backing AU Choice For WHO Top Post

Liberia Somersaults: Now Backing AU Choice For WHO Top Post

Monrovia  -  The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to clarify a front-page story published in the FrontPageAfrica newspaper, Vol. 10 No. 173 of Thursday, September 15, 2016, under the caption: “Africa Betrayal?”; and to, on the contrary, affirm the Government of Liberia’s commitment to the African Union’s Decision to support the candidature of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia in election for the position of Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2017.

In its story, FrontPageAfrica indicated among other issues that while the African Union has endorsed Ethiopia’s candidature for the position of Director-General of the World Health Organization, at the African Union Heads of State and Government gathering in January 2016, Liberia is contesting along with France’s candidate against the decision of the African Union.

On the contrary, the Government of the Republic of Liberia wishes to confirm its support for the candidature of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, for the position of Director General of the World Health Organization, in conformity with a decision reached at the 26th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union in Addis Ababa, in January 2016. 

The Government of Liberia however avers that prior to the submission of Ethiopia’s candidature to the African Union for consideration and subsequent endorsement by the continental body, the Government of France had earlier directly requested Liberia's support for France’s candidature for the position of Director-General of WHO with the proviso that Liberia’s Health Minister Mrs. Bernice Dahn would surface in the position of Deputy Director-General.

In view of the foregoing, the Government of Liberia acceded to the request and agreed to support the candidacy of France.

However, in light of the African Union's decision to endorse the candidacy of Ethiopia, and in the interest of sustaining Liberia’s image as a respectable member of the African Union, the Government of Liberia decided to conform with the decision of the rest of Africa.

Meanwhile, France remains an invaluable partner of the Republic of Liberia on many other international and local fronts which would be undoubtedly maintained in the interest of our two countries.

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