By Melvin Jackson [email protected]
When President George Weah requested an extension of his trip to Paris, social media users and critics called him a liar and a criminal.
“Why lie that the Paris forum was extended from November 18 and the official date was Nov 11-12? Shame on you, Jorweah. We will vote you out in 2023.
According to the users, the Paris peace forum in France was never extended to November 18, as claimed by Liberia’s president George Weah.
Hence, they claimed he (Weah) lied to the Liberian senate that the forum was extended from November 15-18, 2022.
President George Weah’s communication to the Liberian senate, dated November 18, informed the August Body that the 5th Edition of the Paris Peace Forum had been extended to November 18.
The big question here is, who is telling the truth? Did President George Weah attend the Paris Peace Forum in France on November 18 instead of the planned date of November 11 to 12?
Research conducted by ‘The Stage Media’ proved that the conference was held from November 11-12 in the presence of France President Emmanuel Macron.
This year’s Paris Peace Forum, the 5th Edition of the annual event, focuses on the theme ‘Riding out the Multi-crisis.’ The UNDP SDG Impact is among the 60 projects selected to be featured this year.
The President did not lie about the extension of the Paris Peace Forum as speculated on social media.
A stop followed the trip to Morocco in Egypt, where President Weah participated in the just-ended COP27, the United Nations Global Climate Change Conference, which kicked off on November 6, 2022, at the Tonino Lamborghini International Convention Center in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.
This conference ran from November 6 to 8, 2022, when the Liberian President left for Qatar to join some world leaders for the official opening of the FIFA World Cup 2022.
According to two separate communications sent to the Liberian Legislature, President Weah told the August body that his trip is intended to hold a series of bilateral and multilateral meetings with his counterparts and business executives.
He further revealed that the adjustment had necessitated his adjustment to attend the conference as a guest of honor to the official opening of the FIFA world cup in Qatar.
President Weah Communication chief, Presidential Press Secretary Isaac Solo Kelgbeh, confirmed that the conference was held from November 11 to 12.
He explained that the President requested an extension from the Liberian senate because his date schedule to meet with President Emmanuel Macron would have gone against his first communication sent to that august body.
The Presidential Press Secretary added that the extension of time mentioned by the President in his communication included activities to the conference, as the President couldn’t have come back before going again to meet with his counterpart due to limited resources to sponsor such travel.
The release also pointed out that the Paris Forum started on November 11 and climaxed on the 15th, but there were sideline meetings organized for heads of state to have met with president Emmanuel Macron.
Conclusion: following our interview with the presidential press secretary and the research conducted, the President of Liberia did not lie to the Liberian senate about the extension of his stay in France, but the request for an extension was to hold multi-bilateral talks with his counterparts and business executives.