STATEMENT CONDEMNING THE VIOLATIONS OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN IN LIBERIA BY AMB. JOSEPH NYUMA BOAKAI

My Fellow Liberians;

The present trending issue about the tell-all biography, entitled “George Weah The Dream, The Legend, The Rise to Power: The Journey of an Enigmatic Leader,” has compelled me to speak against what I consider a ‘debasement’ of women in our Liberian society.

I have a definite position on the issues of the rights of women in Liberia and, for that matter, anywhere in the world.  My position remains to defend the sanctity, security and the value of womanhood.

We have come to realize that these values have come under attack with increases in Sexual-Based Gender Violence, especially increases of rapes and other affronts against Liberian womanhood.

I am disheartened by these senseless and lawless behaviors against babies, young girls, and women.  Reports of rapes are prevalent in the social media and traditional media.  Two recent horrible examples were published in FrontPageAfrica online and Liberian Influence, just to name a few media outlets. These includes the rape and sodomizing of a 13-year-old girl on Camp Johnson Road who subsequently died; and another case I was informed about was a young lady who was gang-raped with each male-member being timed for their individual sexual assaults from which she also subsequently died.

This is so un-Liberian and alien to our way of thinking as Liberians. This is not what we desire for our girls and women in our society.

I have come to tell you, fellow Liberians, that respect for womanhood is at the center of Liberian traditional society and those values and traditions should not and cannot be desecrated without telling the world Liberia is an uncivilized country.

It is part of our Liberian tradition to honor our daughters, sisters, wives, and mothers, so to have all of these stories told about what is happening without any redress creates room for the continuity of impunity that exists today.

The gross disrespect shown to the First Lady of Liberia, Mrs. Clar Weah, is yet another example of the way the world is made to view Liberia as a nation that does not respect their daughters, sisters, wives, and mothers.  To speak about the First Lady in the way done as published in this tell-all book is another clear indication of how some Liberians think of our women, and I want to say that our women desire the respect and dignity the civilized world exhibits for the elevation of women.

I therefore condemn in the strongest terms those who engage in the discussion and description of women in the form and manner like we are seeing in the social media and the traditional media.   I would like to remind all of us that Liberia, our Country, is a traditional African Society that values the privacy of women no matter their status in Society. Any usage of despicable language or literature that tends to disrespect our women is condemned in our Liberian society.

I therefore ask women everywhere to condemn this act of violation of their status as women and the denigration of their womanhood to rise, shame and name such perpetrators. I say to our women, don’t stand there, act positively to restore your dignity together with the men.

Finally, my fellow Liberians, I know that you have been anxiously waiting to hear from me on the status of the CPP as its current Chairman. The matter of the CPP involves four constituent political parties and must be carefully handled.  In the coming week, I shall be reporting to the Liberian people on matters relating to the CPP with a view on the way forward.  I want to reassure all Liberians that whatever directions these deliberations lead us to, I, Joseph Nyuma Boakai, will continue to pursue the path of peace and a vibrant Liberia for all.

I therefore call on you to continue to repose your confidence in us, and avoid issues designed and orchestrated to create fear and anxiety intended to discourage you from keeping your focus on our mission of redeeming our country.

The bright future of our beloved country is in our hands collectively and must be guided jealously.

I thank you.

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