Dr. Antoinette Weeks, the director of exploration activities at the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL), a fresh batch of appointees last Friday, August 2, to replace Mr. Samuel Kofi Woods as Minister of Public Works. The new appointments were made public by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf late Friday evening.
Former Public Works Minister Kofi Woods recently exited the Sirleaf-Administration. His resignation came days after the demise of his mentor, Archbishop Michael Kpakala Francis. It took the President over a month to final confirm Wood’s departure from her government. According to her, her former lieutenant exited his post to direct his attention to civil society and human rights issues by revamping the Catholic Peace and Justice Commission (JPC).
Wood’s replacement, Dr. Weeks holds a PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Lehigh University, (Pennsylvania, USA). She holds an M.Sc in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Howard University (Washington, DC, USA) and a B.Sc. in Civil Engineering from the University of Houston, (Houston, TX, USA).
According to her CV, posted on NOCAL’s website, Dr. Weeks’ professional expertise comprises a diverse array of consulting, design, engineering, infrastructure and sustainable development projects; both local and international, which have also been funded by the United Nations (UN), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the World Bank.
Her CV also shows that she boasts 20+ years of consulting experience in civil works, design, energy and environmental impact assessments; emergency preparedness, hazard mitigation & response; civil, works, infrastructure development, water and wastewater treatment; geotechnical and environmental engineering; foundation design, analysis, & construction, etc.
Dr. Weeks’ other areas of specialty include: civil, geotechnical & environmental engineering; compliance and regulatory oversight; due diligence; environmental, health, & safety; monitoring & evaluation; oil & gas management; program and project management; civil works and sustainable infrastructure development and rehabilitation; sanitation and wastes management.
In her most recent position, Dr. Weeks, provided regulatory & supervisory oversight of Liberia’s hydrocarbon sector; managerial oversight of NOCAL’s technical staff; geological and geophysical analysis & management of Liberia’s hydrocarbon data for exploration & exploitation activities.
Dr. C. William Allen, Minister of the Civil Services Agency, becomes the new Ambassador to France, replacing Ambassador Mckinley Thomas. Dr. Allen is a former Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism. He also served as president of the Press Union of Liberia in the 1980’s.
The newly appointed ambassador to France has several firsts to his credit. They include founding editor-in-chief of the mid-1980’s Footprints Today newspaper and the first vice president of the Liberian Association of Writers, (LAW) which he co-founded in 1984, along with a number of other noted Liberian literary figures. They included Keith Neville A. Best, founding president of LAW, Althea Romeo Mark, Secretary General, Ruth Wuor, Henry Gensang, and Thomas Johnson.
Also resurfacing in government is Chairman James M. Fromayan, former head of the country’s elections body, the National Elections Commission Mr. Fromayan has been named chairman of the National Commission on Small Arms by President Sirleaf. It may be recalled that Fromayan was forced to resign after the first round of the 2011 presidential and legislative elections amid accusations of bias just days before a planned presidential runoff.
In her Friday appointments, the President named Adolph A. Lawrence to the Board of the Liberia Extractive Transparency Initiative. Liberia’s envoy to Ghana, Rudolf von Ballmoos, will now head to the United Kingdom as Liberia’s new Ambassador there.
Levi Demmah has been appointed as Deputy Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Transport; while Ebenezer Kolliegboi has been named Deputy Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Posts & Telecommunications and Cllr. Wheatonia Dixon-Barnes now leaves the Liberia Repatriation, Resettlement & Reintegration Comission (LRRRC) as chair, to become Deputy Minister for Administration and Public Safety at the Ministry of Justice.
All of the above nominations are subject to confirmation by the Senate, where applicable.