Arson suspected in Independence Day Executive Mansion Fire
At approximately at 2:20 p.m. Wednesday immediately after the official commemoration of the 159th Independence at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion, news broke of a raging fire that destroyed the 2nd, 3rd and 4th floors of the Executive Mansion. The fire destroyed the Office of the President on the fourth floor, Cabinet room among other offices at the mansion. At the time of the fire, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and her guests including Ghanaian President John Koufour, Tejan Kabbah of Sierra Leone and Laurent Gbagbo of Ivory Coast were already seated when they were hurriedly whisked off by security guards. In a brief statement to the nation, President Sirleaf promised an uncompromising investigation into the cause of the fire and assured the nation that the incident would not deter her from presidential functions, although her office was completely destroyed.
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