Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has been chosen for this year's Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development for being an "inspiration" to women and ensuring return of peace and democracy in her country, it was announced today.
She was selected for the award, set up by Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust, by an international jury chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
The Indira Gandhi Prize is awarded to her for serving as an "example and inspiration" to women in Africa and beyond and for ensuring the return of peace, democracy, development, security and order in Liberia.
The jury also commended her strong interest in the consolidation and improvement of Liberia's relations with India, a statement said.
Starting from a humble background, Sirleaf has risen to the Presidency becoming the first elected female head of state of the African continent.
"This is all the more remarkable as it has taken place against all odds in a country which until recently saw civil strife and social discord. Hers has been a story of indomitable courage, strong determination and the yearning to achieve.
"Sirleaf took over office as the President of Liberia in 2006 acquiring a legacy of distrust, disharmony and mismanagement. Restoring financial health to a country on the verge of fiscal breakdown was a singularly successful achievement," the statement said.
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