Pictorial view of some of the buses donated by the Turkish Government to the Government of Liberia
Pictorial view of some of the buses donated by the Turkish Government to the Government of Liberia
Photo Credit: Public Affairs

Monrovia, Thursday, August 20, 2015: The program marking the official handing over ceremony of Twenty (20) Buses donated by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality to the City government of Monrovia of the Republic of Liberia was held on Thursday, August 20, 2015 at the National Port Authority. Speaking during the program, Hon. Nyekeh Forkpa, who proxied for the Acting Managing Director of the National Port Authority welcomed dignitaries headed by Vice President, Ambassador Joseph Nyumah Boakai as well as delegates of the Turkish Government to the program. He expressed delight about the kind donation of the Government of Turkey to the People of Liberia which he said will go a long way in easing some of the transportation problems in the City of Monrovia.

For his part, Mr. Ismail Hakki Turunc, Advisor to the Mayor & Member of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Assembly who spoke on behalf of the Turkish Government during the presentation expressed the hope that the cordial ties between Liberia and Turkey will continue to prosper. He urged that the buses be used for the intended purposes so as to bring relief to the residents of Monrovia and its environs.

In brief remarks, Mr. Daniel T. Johnson, Technical Focal Point, Policy, Planning & Projects who deputized for Transport Minister, Angela Cassell Bush thanked the Turkish Government, the National Port Authority and the City Government of Monrovia of the Republic of Liberia for the collaboration. He said as head of the transportation sector in Liberia, the Ministry of Transport alongside the MCC & NTA in the collective effort in making transportation available  and affordable for the people, will ensure that the buses are used for their intended purpose.

In their separate statements, Hon. Tarnue Jeke, Managing Director for the National Transit Authority, Hon. Cyvette C. Gibson, Paynesville City Mayor, and Hon. Clara Doe Mvogo, Monrovia City Mayor who spoke briefly expressed sincere appreciation to the Turkish Government which they said that the 20 buses will beef up the current fleet of the entity so as to bring further relief to the populace of Monrovia and its environs. In speech, Hon. Jeke however promised that the buses will not go beyond the scope of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the National Transit Authority (NTA) and Monrovia City Corporation (MCC).

In special remarks, His Excellency Ambassador Joseph Nyuma Boakai, Vice President of the Republic of Liberia, thanked the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality of the Republic of Turkey for the donation of twenty (20) buses to the Government of Liberia which he said will ease the transportation problems in Monrovia and Paynesville and spoke of the many challenges faced by students commuting to school under difficult weather conditions. He praised the strong and longstanding ties between Turkey and Liberia as evident by many bilateral agreements reached  between the two countries in many areas of cooperation including programs in education, the economy, cultural exchange and transportation among others. The Vice President said the Republic of Turkey is a true friend of Liberia that has made many contributions toward the rebuilding of the country.

Concluding, Vice President Boakai  told his audience that the best appreciation we can show for such a gift is to maintain the buses and put into place a code of conduct for the drivers who are assigned to these vehicles.