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Headline News from Liberia

Foreign Minister Gayewea McIntosh Addresses the Avoided Deforestation Partners Forum in Durban
Written by MOFA Press   
Friday, 09 December 2011 02:16

According to a Foreign Ministry release, the statement was contained in the Liberian President’s Message to Avoided Deforestation Partners COP 17 Event in Durban, South Africa on Wednesday, December 7th, read on her behalf by Foreign Minister, Dr. Toga Gayewea McIntosh.

President Johnson Sirleaf further noted that the issue of how to protect people, forest and the climate – while ensuring sustainable development – is extremely important not only to her, but to Liberia as a country. She said that the conference which centers on the challenges of food security and poverty reduction in the face of natural resource depletion are key issues of survival that Liberians face every day.

The Liberian leader reminded the conference that the country is still recovering from a long civil conflict during which its economy and forests took a heavy toll. “Perhaps more than any other nation, my country has seen how the exploitation of natural resources can be used to fuel conflict, corruption and to impoverish people,” she said.

According to her, Liberia is rebuilding and her Government wants to develop Liberia in a sustainable way, which she said, will protect the remaining forests, contribute to climate mitigation, and provide for the needs of ordinary Liberians; not only for today, but well into the future.

President Johnson Sirleaf reiterated that Liberians have difficult choices to make regarding infrastructure development and agriculture, mining and logging expansion; reiterating that there is an urgent need to create jobs and livelihoods, particularly in rural areas.

The Liberian leader explained that mounting and effective response requires thinking very hard about how we can make best use of our land, forest, and natural resources in a way that reduces poverty and meets our development needs while at the same time protecting our people and wildlife, and providing resilience against climate change.

She however emphasized that Liberia has the opportunity to shift its development path from one that exploited our forests and treated natural resources as a curse, to one that protects and sustainably manages our most valued resources for the benefit of our economy and our citizens.

President Johnson Sirleaf, not only paid tribute to the life and work of Noble Laureate Wangari Maathai, but pointed out that Green Climate Fund is critical to the development process of member countries.

She reiterated that as President of Liberia, it has been her goal to make a difference in the lives of ordinary people

J. Wesley Washington   
(+231) 886.512.460 / 777.512.460