In 2009, a special court was established to deal with the numerous rape cases in and around Monrovia. See abbreviationfinder for geography, history, society, politics, and economy of Liberia.
Instability in neighboring Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire, 30,000 refugees from Côte d’Ivoire, a steady flow of cross-border weapons and high unemployment contributed in 2010 to social instability in Liberia. At the same time, police and security forces’ attacks were characterized by almost total impunity. It was therefore welcomed when an independent National Human Rights Commission was established in September 2010.
In October/November 2011, Sirleaf was re-elected as President. She got 43.9% of the vote in the first round, while Winston Tubman came in second place with 32.7%. The two candidates should therefore move on to the 2nd round, but Tubman claimed that Sirleaf had scammed in the 1st round and therefore urged his supporters to boycott the 2nd round. As a result, only 38% voted in the second round, against 71.8% in the first round. In contrast, Sirleaf was elected with 90.7% of the votes cast. The election campaign was already characterized by some unrest, and when Sirleaf was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize 4 days before the first round, it intensified her opponent’s reluctance.
At the same time as the presidential election, parliamentary elections won by Sirleafs UP with 17.76% of the vote. In addition to her party, another 10 parties were represented in the Chamber of Deputies as well as 9 independents. For the Senate election, UP had to settle for 12.85% of the vote while the largest opposition party CDC got 20.2%.
Fundamentalist Christian sects in the United States have gained a foothold in several parts of Africa since 2000, and the influence has led especially to the persecution of homosexuals. In February 2012, 2 Liberian MPs proposed that homosexuality be punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Sirleaf subsequently stated that she could not immediately support the proposal, but that homosexuality was contrary to African culture.
Sirleaf was awarded Indira Gandhi the award by India’s President Pranab Mukherjee in September 2013.
In December 2013, the first case of Ebola was registered in Guinea. However, the WHO first registered the cases as Ebola and as an epidemic in March 2014. That same month, the first cases were registered in Liberia. In July, the president closed all national borders, schools and universities. At the same time, the worst affected areas were quarantined. However, the country balanced on the brink of a disaster with only 50 doctors to 3 million. inhabitants. In September, the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported that some of the country’s hospitals were already closed while the rest lacked the very basic supplies. The month after, Liberia’s ambassador to Washington declared the country balanced on the brink of collapse. Ebola was then found in all 15 districts of the country. On October 31, China announced that it would build a 100-bed treatment center in Liberia that would open a month later. At the same time, China sent 480 healthcare professionals to treat the patients. Then it started to move forward and in mid-January 2015 the epidemic was limited to 2 municipalities. Authorities then believed that the epidemic would be over in June 2015. 3,587 deaths were then registered in Liberia. More than in any other West African country.
In September 2014, Belgium arrested Liberian Martina Johnson, former commander of the rebel group National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL). Johnson had lived in Belgium for several years, but was placed before a judge for a trial for his participation in war crimes in Liberia in 1989-96. In November, Alieu Kosiah was arrested in Switzerland. He had a past as a commander of the United Liberation Movement of Liberia for Democracy (ULIMO), who was also responsible for war crimes during the civil war in Liberia.
Liberia was declared free of Ebola in September 2015, but in November new cases emerged. Isolated villages and suspicion of authorities and foreign health professionals meant that persons could be infected or die without the knowledge of the authorities. Again in January 2016, the country was again declared Ebola free by the WHO. 4,809 had died of the disease in Liberia. More than in any other West African country.
In 2016, it emerged that a number of President Sirleaf’s close family members – including two sons – had held high-paying positions in a number of the state’s companies. In 2017, in the so-called Paradise Papers that revealed economic crime in Bermuda, it was revealed that the president himself was the director of a drawer company in the tax shelter. In her speech on the state of the nation in January 2017, Sirleaf herself had declared that the corruption in the country was too extensive for her to eradicate it.
In October 2017, parliamentary and presidential elections were held. In the election, the CDC coalition was given 21 seats (up 7), while the Unity Party (UP) received 19 (down 5). President Sirleaf could not stand for re-election as the Constitution limited her to 2 terms. In the first round of elections, CDC’s George Weah got 38.4% of the vote, while UP’s Joseph Boakai got 28.8%.