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The leaders of Sierra Leone and Liberia on Friday 6 May, 2016, called for more collaboration to end Ebola in their respective countries.

The call came following a joint communique signed by both President Dr Ernest Bai Koroma and his Liberian counterpart, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who was on a one-day working and friendly visit to Sierra Leone.

The two heads of state, according to the communique, agreed on not only ending the Ebola epidemic in their respective countries, but also exchanged views on political, security, health, socio-economic cooperation as well as progress and challenges with national dimensions of the implementation of the post-Ebola recovery programmes.

Ending Ebola in the respective countries and in the sub-region, the two heads of state expressed satisfaction and optimism, and reiterated the need for cooperation with each other in the implementation of their post-Ebola recovery/reconstruction programmes.

Both President Koroma and President Johnson Sirleaf also agreed to intensify bilateral teamwork at all levels - intelligence sharing and security alertness, considering recent atrocities caused by terrorist networks in Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Côte d'Ivoire and Mali. They therefore heightened the need for peace and sustainable development in the MRU basin after Ebola.

The two leaders agreed on providing support for ECOWAS programmes for political and economic integration and promised to attend the forthcoming ECOWAS summit of heads of state and government in Dakar, Senegal in June 2016.

Addressing a meeting shortly after the signing ceremony, President Koroma said Sierra Leone will continue to engage with Liberia to finding lasting solutions to the current economic situation facing the three Ebola hard-hit countries of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

President Koroma commended President Johnson Sirleaf for her relentless efforts in defeating Ebola in Liberia.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, in her response, extended gratitude to the Government and People of Sierra Leone for the warm reception on her arrival at the Presidential Lounge in Lungi.

She disclosed that she had, prior to her visit, held similar engagement with Guinean President, Prof. Alpha Conde. She noted that she was making her first visit to the country after the Ebola outbreak and expressed heartfelt condolences to the families of those who lost their lives to the disease. President Johnson Sirleaf promised continuous cooperation with Sierra Leone within the MRU framework.

Madam Johnson Sirleaf also commended health workers for their dedication and diligent service in the fight against Ebola, adding that Liberia will continue to stand by Sierra Leone to push for greater development. She extended an invite to President Koroma for a reciprocal visit.

 

Source: State House Communication

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