President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Pres. Sirleaf Signs RIA Land Deed
MONROVIA, July 8 (LINA) - President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has signed the land deed in favor of the Roberts International Airport (RIA) in the wake of plans to reconstruct the facility.
According to an Executive Mansion release, the Government of Liberia under the leadership of President Sirleaf has initiated a long-term plan to create an airport city at the RIA.
At the signing ceremony in her office last Friday, President Sirleaf expressed delight that the long running demarcation of the RIA property has now been concluded and deeded.
The Liberian President described the exercise as a milestone and a boost to the reconstruction plan of RIA and renewed her administration’s commitment to the reconstruction of the airport.
Speaking earlier, the chairman of the Land Commission, Dr. Othello Brandy, thanked President Sirleaf for government’s support to the work of the Commission in reaching a logical conclusion that prevents a potential land conflict.
Dr. Brandy told the Liberian leader that the process leading to the conclusion of the survey was consultative and participatory with the surrounding communities which, according to him, served as a catalyst for the finalization of the survey and deeding of the property.
Because of the openness of the process, according to Dr. Brandy, the Land Commission felt secure in processing the deed which was subsequently signed by President Sirleaf.
In the deed, the adjacent township of ‘Smell No Taste’ is not included in the property of RIA and was therefore not affected by the survey.
The deeding of the RIA property and subsequent signing of the deed by the Liberian President is expected to pave the way for the commencement of the first phase of the Master Plan of the reconstruction initiatives during the coming dry season.
The first phase, which is projected to cost about US$60 million, will include the rehabilitation of the runway, taxiways, installation of airport ground lighting and instrument landing system.
The first step to achieving this, according to Mr. Gyude Moore, head of the Program Delivery Unit (PDU) at the Ministry of State, was to clarify existing land boundaries and legally establish the limits of the airport’s property.