George Weah on Tuesday set relatively modest targets for his six-year term, promising to make the country self-sustaining in agriculture and renovating infrastructure.
In his first interview since his victory with more than 60% of the votes in the second round of the presidential election, the former football star of 51 years began to specify his program.
George Weah, who will succeed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in power since January 2006, announced on Saturday that he would open the country to foreign investment and free him from the scourge of corruption.
“I want us to be self-sufficient so that we can export,” said the president-elect in an exclusive interview with Reuters.
“The government is responsible for (the implementation of) agricultural programs so that people can grow their own food,” he added, citing Ghana and neighboring countries as exporters. “They export and we can do it,” he said.
More than 60 per cent of Liberians work in the agricultural sector, where multinationals have invested heavily in palm oil plantations. But agriculture stagnates because of low productivity, forcing the country to import more than 80% of staple foods.
The president-elect, a native of Clara Town slum in Monrovia, also promises to focus on improving infrastructure.
“Roads are crucial for connectivity,” he said. “We have partners and we have revenues that we will guarantee will go to the construction of our roads,” he added.
The former center-forward of Monaco, PSG and AC Milan also pledged to surround themselves with leading experts and advisers and invited Liberian expatriates to return home.
“We will have economists to put us on the path. They will look at what’s in the crates and find out how to move forward, “he said.