At Liberia’s 174th Independence Day celebration, President George Manneh Weah dedicated a crucial Japanese – built road linking important commercial corridors of Monrovia, saying the “Japan Freeway,” formerly Somalia Drive, will bring much-needed relief to people who have long struggled with unending traffic congestion.
“The Japan Freeway will bring much-needed relief to people of this area who have long struggled with unending traffic congestion,” President Weah said during the dedication ceremony of the Japan Freeway in Gardnerville Township, Montserrado County on 26 July.
He thanked his predecessor, former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf under whose administration the project began, for the role she played in the initiation of the project and all those involved in seeing it to completion.
“Today marks a major milestone in the development drive to improve our country’s infrastructure. As we gather here today to dedicate this crucial road linking important commercial corridors of Monrovia, we remain committed and steadfast in achieving the deliverables as set forth in the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD),” he said.
On behalf of the government and people of Liberia and in his own name, President Weah thanked the government and people of Japan for this wonderful gift which was being delivered on the occasion marking Liberia’s 174th Independence Day celebration.
He said this represents one more vital step in confronting the infrastructure deficit that Liberia faces, recalling that during his visit to Japan in 2019 for the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), he and former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe re-committed their respective governments to continued bilateral cooperation.
“Therefore, let me use this opportunity to again reiterate Liberia’s commitment to development cooperation with Japan under the TICAD framework and through direct bilateral engagement. The dedication of this road today is a manifestation of the strong partnership that exists between both countries,” President Weah stated.
He assured the Japanese Envoy to Liberia that this relationship will continue to be nurtured under his administration, noting that Japan remains one of Liberia’s key partners in its development agenda.
Meanwhile, President Weah cautioned all would-be users and members of the communities along the road to help in its maintenance through proper use.
“We all have a responsibility to maintain the gift which has been given to us. So let us demonstrate our continuous appreciation to the Japanese government and its people through the way in which we take care of this Japan Freeway,” he said.
He warned against building makeshift market stalls on the road, saying people should not throw garbage in the gutters and drainage.
“Do not throw trash on the road! My fellow Liberians, let all of us do our part as responsible citizens,” he concluded.