9 April Press Brief

Monday, 9th April 2007
Welcome to another regular press briefing.

Letís begin with an issue which has claimed the attention of the Office of the President. The issue borders on the illegal occupancy of land around the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports complex by individuals. The land around the sports complex belongs to the government of Liberia.
Individuals who have erected structures on the land run the risk of having those structures demolised, to make way for the renovation of the hotel at the Complex and other development by a private Chinese construction firm. Individuals who are erecting strutures or those illegally occupying land around the SKD sports complex are being advised to put a halt to further construction.

The Ministy of Lands, Mines and Energy has already re-surved the land around the sports complex and has submitted a map of the area to the Ministry of Youth and Sports, as the Chinese prepare to expand development at the Sports Complex.

I also like to inform you that the ban on scrap material remains in force. An Inter-ministerial group, headed by the Ministry of Lands & Mines, is reviewing all scrap agreements. The ban, however, does not affect the Liberia Electricity Corporation, with its ongoing Phase-2 of the Emergency Power Program. Edgail Incorporated has been given the go ahead to scrap the Bushrod Island facilties of LEC. The facilites are obselete and have no economic value to the Corporation. The Company will be clearing the plant to make way for the installation of new generators and accessories under the second phase of the Emergency Power Program.

The scraping of a sunken vessel off the coast of Sinoe County is also exempted from the ban on scrap. Northstar Industry Incorporation has been given the greenlight to scrap the vessel.

The Presidentís county-wide tour continues on Wednesday, April 11, with visits to Saclapea, Zwedru, Fishtown, and Harper and Sinoe.
The tour started on Saturday with a visit to Gparpolu County. While in Gbapolu, the President visited Belle Yalla and broke grounds for a school in the District.  The President also inspected a number of development projects, including the dedication of a hospital in Borpolu City, named in honor of Chief Jallah Lone, who was also on hand to grace the occasion.
A Guest House, a school, Court House and Market building were also dedicated in Bopolu city.

And now on the recent visit to Canada by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
There have been various speculations in the press regarding the visit.
Well, the fact of the matter is that the Canadian government has no political or diplomatic reasons to shun our government or the President. The cost of the visit was to a large extent absorbed by the organizers of the visit.

Let me now take the opportunity to introduce the Deputy Chief of Staff for Public Affairs, Mr. Amara Konneh, who will now throw more light on the Presidentís recent visit to Canada.  Mr. Konneh was a member of the Presidentís delegation to Canada.