IFRC Delegation Pays Courtesy Call On Vice President Boakai

Thursday, 7th July 2011

Monrovia, Liberia - The Vice President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Mr. Paul Birech, who is currently visiting Liberia, on Wednesday paid a courtesy call on Liberian Vice President Joseph N. Boakai, Sr., at his Capitol Building office.

Mr. Birech who arrived in the country at the head of a five-man delegation, is on a tour of IFCR branches in Africa to assess their status. He said his tour has already taken him to Nigeria and the Ivory Coast.

He told the Vice President that he and his delegation have already visited Ivorian refugee camps in Nimba County, and thanked the Liberian Government and residents of Nimba County for the support they were giving Ivorian refugees.

The IFRC Vice President stressed the need to empower Ivorian refugees
to enable them plant rice and other food commodities so that they can become
self-reliant in food.

He also stressed the need to develop national Red Cross societies so that they can put up the synergies and structures to produce their own resources which they can utilize for their own upliftment.

Mr. Birech used the occasion to challenge Liberians to comport themselves in a peaceful manner during this election period to ensure the sustenance of the peace now being enjoyed in the country.

In remarks, Vice President Boakai thanked the IFRC for being a true friend of Liberia over the years, noting that the IFRC stood by Liberia during the civil crisis.

He pledged the Governmentís support for the work of the IFRC which, he noted is a neutral organization.

He assured that Ivorian refugees, who have family ties with residents of northern Nimba County, will always be accepted in Liberia.

Vice President Boakai said he was happy that the Ivorian crisis did not drag on for long, saying it would have become a burden to post-conflict Liberia had it lasted longer than it did.

The IFRC delegation was accompanied to the Vice Presidentís Office by the Secretary General of the Liberian National Red Cross Society.

Other members of the IFRC delegation were Mr. Jerry Niati, IFRC West Coast Regional Representative, Mr. Alasan Senghore, IFRC Africa Zone Director, Sadrack Bertrand Matanda, IFRC Operations Coordinator and Mr. Ademola Alao, IFRC Reporting Officer.

Meanwhile, the female Volleyball Team of Grace College, University of  Indiana, U.S.A, which is in the country as guest of the YMCA, on Wednesday, July 6 paid a courtesy call on Vice President Boakai at his Capitol Building office.

The team, Ignite International which arrived in the country last Thursday is in the country for a ten-day visit.

The leader of the Team, Madam Judy Fox, commended the Liberian government for the strides it is making in reconstructing the war-torn nation. She said they were in the country to partner with the YMCA to instill values in the youth.

In remarks, Vice President thanked the delegation for choosing to visit Liberia. He observed that the YMCA has over the years been involved in more than just youth activities.

Vice President Boakai, a former president of the Monrovia YMCA, said during the Liberian crisis, the YMCA was involved in relief activities before the intervention of relief organizations.

He said he has no doubts that the visit of the team would not only be received enthusiastically, but would encourage Liberian youth.