Liberian Leader Declared ‘State of Emergency’ Amid COVID-19 Fight

Liberia leader, President George M. Weah

The Liberian leader, President George Manneh Weah during his long awaited nationwide address yesterday, April 8, 2020,  declared a State of Emergency noting that, “The global spread of the virus represents the greatest threat to the people and well-being of the People of Liberia since the Ebola epidemic suffered our country from 2014 to 2016”

Addressing hundreds of Liberians who had gathered around their various radio sets said, “My fellow Liberians, although our health team is working assiduously to complete the testing of scores of contacts, let us recognize that the COVID-19 virus has now entered a new phase in our country as we move from protection to containment. The dynamics of our management of the disease have been significantly changed there will be required additional strong measures to delay the spreading of this highly infectious virus and keep our public safety.”

“Therefore, by the authority granted to me under Articles 85, 86, 87 and 88 of the Liberian Constitution and after due consultation with the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate as required by law, I, George Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia, hereby, declare a State of Emergency to exist in and throughout the Republic of Liberia for a period of three weeks renewable until the threat to Liberia from the COVID-19 Virus no longer exists.”

He further lamented that the global pandemic is killing thousands of people around the world and there is no vaccine or cure.

“The global spread of the virus represents the greatest threat to the people and well-being of the People of Liberia since the Ebola epidemic suffered our country from 2014 to 2016,” he said. He also noted that confirmed cases are on the rise.

“Therefore, by the authority granted to me under Articles 85, 86, 87 and 88 of the Liberian Constitution and after due consultation with the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate as required by law, I, George Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia, hereby, declare a State of Emergency to exist in and throughout the Republic of Liberia for a period of three weeks renewable until the threat to Liberia from the COVID-19 Virus no longer exists.”

He has, therefore, called for an emergency reconvening of the Legislature in a joint session to endorse the State of Emergency by joint resolution.

Under the State of Emergency all 15 counties are quarantined from 11;59pm, Friday, April 10 until further notice.

Movement between counties is strictly prohibited; no person shall be permitted to enter or leave the borders of any county to another county except for Montserradi County and Margibi County which are quarantined as a single unit.

Also, all residents within the borders of Montserrado County, Margibi County, Nimba County, and Grand Kru are to stay at home throughout the time of the quarantine.

“Throughout this period, residents may leave home only for essential journeys like reasons of health and food which should be restricted to your local communities only and be limited to a single person per household for a maximum of one hour,” he warned.

Liberia as of April 8 has 25 confirmed cases, according to the National Public Health Institute.

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About Cholo Brooks 12227 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.