Archbishop Hart re-elected president of the LCC

The Bishop of Liberia and the Archbishop of the Province of West Africa, the Most Rev. Jonathan Hart, has been re-elected to a two year term as president of the Liberian Council of Churches (LCC). Archbishop Hart was reelected on the first ballot last week at an election held at the close of the Council’s 30th general assembly at Bushrod Island. Under his leadership, the LCC has pushed the government of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to tackle the issues of corruption, education, health and poverty. In a white paper released last month, the LCC stated the country would not be able to rise from poverty until the state and civil society were cleansed of the “vampire” of corruption. However, Minister of Information Lewis G. Brown said the archbishop was being unduly harsh. He noted that in 2007 Liberia was ranked among the most corrupt nations of the world in Transparency International Corruption Perception Index (CPI) Ranking; ranking 150 out of 180 countries. In 2014 “Liberia ranks 94 out of 175 countries. This is the objective proof of the measure of progress in the fight against corruption,” the minister said. He added that it was disingenuous for the archbishop to attempt to separate the church from the issue of corruption. “Many public officials are members of various churches in the country. Some are even serving in high positions of trust in the church,” the minister said in a statement published on 16 Sept 2015. “Either prior to entry into the government or while they are in the government, many of these public officials regularly fall under the moral and spiritual guidance of their clerics. To therefore suggest that the government has failed in the fight against corruption – that these same officials are somehow irredeemably corrupt –even if this were true and supported by available evidence, is to correspondingly admit the moral failing of the church for which the Council must also accept responsibility.

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