Vice President Joe Boakai Memorializes Ruth Perry


Monrovia – Biding final good-bye to the former chairperson of the council state, Ruth Sand Perry Liberia’s Vice President Joseph N. Boakai described Perry as “An Outstanding and Great African Woman.

Veep Boakai averred that the fallen stateswoman invested in the fight against war, discrimination, exploitation, inhumanity and violence adding that the best Liberians can do is to cherish her memory, uphold the principles, ideals and aspirations she courageously defended.

Vice President Boakai said at the continental level, Madam Perry was among several African Women to be recognized as “Women of Substance” at the African Union Diaspora African Forum in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Vice President Boakai was speaking in Columbus, Ohio when he paid Special Tribute on behalf of the Government of Liberia at the Funeral Service for the Late Ruth Sando Fahnbulleh Perry, Former Chairperson the Council of State of Liberia, a release from the Office of the Vice President said.

In the tribute, Vice President Boakai said ‘indeed Liberia is in deep grief for this profound loss of such a fine character and leader and described her as a “towering daughter of Liberia and the African Continent.”

Madam Ruth Sando Fahnbulleh Perry, led Liberia’s council of state during the long-running civil war has died.

Madam Perry died quietly at the home of her son, Ralph Perry, in Colombus, Ohio in the early hours of Sunday morning.“She died in my hands this morning,” Ralp Perry said.

Madam Perry who had been ailing for quite some time, was interim chairwoman of the Council of State of Liberia from September 3, 1996 to August 2, 1997.

Prior to the election of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Perry was regarded as the first female president of Liberia and of contemporary Africa.

Ruth Perry handed the presidential powers to President Charles Taylor following the 1997 presidential elections that ended more than a decade of civil war.

Born on July 16, 1939, in Grand Cape Mount County, Perry was the daughter of Marjon and AlHaji Semila Fahnbulleh.

Her parents later enrolled her in a Roman Catholic school for girls in Monrovia run by missionary nuns.

Ruth Perry graduated from the Teachers College of the University of Liberia and later worked as an elementary school teacher in Grand Cape Mount County.

She married McDonald Perry, a judge and legislator and they had seven children, one of whom, Georgia Jebbeh Perry, resides in the state of Rhode Island with her husband Augustus Duncan and their 5 children.

Madam Perry previously worked in the Monrovia office of Chase Manhattan Bank in 1971 and taught at a Sande school as an elder.

When her husband was involved in politics, Ruth Perry engaged in the electoral campaign and tried to get women to vote for him. After her husband died, the party asked Ruth to run as senator for their home district.

In 1985, Perry won a seat in the Liberian Senate as a Unity Party candidate.

Ruth Perry broke ranks with the UP following the controversial 1985 elections won by Samuel Doe.

After Unity Party office-holders and other official opposition politicians boycotted the Senate in protest, asserting that the Doe government was illegitimate, Perry did not join the boycott and became the lone member of the opposition in the Assembly.