Dominic Massa / Eyewitness News
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NEW ORLEANS - In a strongly-worded statement, Ray Nagin's predecessor as mayor of New Orleans, Marc Morial, said late Wednesday that Nagin's conviction was the final chapter in a story of damage done to the city during Nagin's term in office.
“New Orleans has been damaged in an immeasurable – yet, thankfully not irreparable – way by Ray Nagin’s and Greg Meffert’s campaign of corruption and self-dealing," Morial said.
"It is a sad day for all of us when those who are elected and entrusted to protect our citizens demonstrate such little regard for the tremendous duty and responsibility of leading this great city. I hope that this conviction reminds the current generation of New Orleans elected officials, as well as others across the nation, of just how essential personal integrity and commitment are to public service."
Morial, who is now president of the National Urban League, served as mayor from 1994 to 2002, preceding Nagin's term in office.
"Fortunately, my hometown of New Orleans is strong and resilient and has already begun, under a new administration, to move past the damage directly caused by Nagin and Meffert. Elected office is a sacred public trust, and ineptitude, lack of integrity, and abuse of power have no seat at the table. I hope that everyone who is proud to call New Orleans “home” can now fully put this behind us and move on to the business of continuing to push our city forward.”