n Africa Conflict Monthly Monitor - The heavy tasks of Liberia's President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf : people making an impact

Volume 2013, Issue 11
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Upon taking office in 2006, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was faced with the monumental task of rebuilding a Liberian state desecrated by 20 years of civil war. The task was complicated by a weak political mandate, rampant corruption, crippling external debt and a deeply divided society that was distrusting of the political system. The reform and political stability achieved thus far by Africa's first female head of state cannot be ignored. While the process of reform has been slow in certain areas, a combination of technical knowledge, political will and strong diplomatic relationships has allowed the Harvard-educated president to implement key reforms under extremely difficult circumstances. Under Sirleaf's presidency, Liberia has become a source of regional stability, strong economic growth and progressive diplomacy - something that did not seem possible nine years ago.

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