New leader for Liberia

A relatively unknown businessman has been appointed leader of Liberia.

    The new government is charged with bringing peace to Liberia

    Gyude Bryant was chosen on Thursday by fellow countrymen attending peace talks in Ghana.

    He will lead the country's interim government from October, and h

    is deputy will be Wesley Johnson, the chairman of the United People's Party.

    The chairman's and the vice-chairman's posts correspond to the jobs of president and vice-president in previous Liberian administrations.

    Civil war

    However, the functions have been renamed to stress the caretaker nature of the new government, aimed at bringing peace after four years of a brutal civil conflict.

    Bryant, who is from the Liberia Action Party, was picked from a list of three candidates proposed by 18 political parties and other civil groups attending the Accra talks.

    He is a leading member of the Episcopal Church in Liberia, but was considered to be the weakest of the three contenders for the top job.

    The other two candidates were Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, a veteran opposition figure, and Rudolph Sherman from the True Whig Party.

    Former president Taylor was
    forced out from power

    Surprise

    Bryant said he was not taken aback by his nomination.

    "I am not too surprised because the Liberians need a neutralist and I believe I am a neutralist," he said.

    But a 

    Liberian journalist said the decision took most people by surprise

    .

    "Everybody said that Ellen (Johnson-Sirleaf) would be the right person at this time because of her connection with the United Nations and the international community.

    Peace deal

    "At this time when the UN is thinking of sending in a peacekeeping force under Chapter VII of the (UN) charter, it would been helpful to have someone like her," he said. 

     

    The new interim government is to remain in power until January 2006.

    Elections are scheduled to be held in late 2005, according to a sweeping peace deal signed on Monday to end Liberia's war.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    New information has come to light about thousands of mostly Yemeni children believed to have been abducted in the 1950s.

    Stories from the sex trade

    Stories from the sex trade

    Dutch sex workers, pimps and johns share their stories.

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    As the stigma associated with being childless persists, some elderly women in India risk it all to become mothers.