Soccer star George Weah wins Liberian presidential election

Football legend George Weah wins Liberian presidential election

Retired footballer George Weah has won the elections in Liberia to become that country's 25th president.

George Weah is set to win Liberia's presidential election runoff, based on provisional results.

Mr Weah, 51, will succeed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa's first elected female president, in the country's first democratic handover of power since 1944.

However, the Electoral Commission of Liberia are yet to declare the official results of the presidential votes.

Though the NEC has not made any pronouncement following the vote on Tuesday, unofficial results that are partly coming in appear to put Mr. Weah in the early lead against Mr. Boakai.

Weah played for some of Europe's biggest clubs, including Monaco, Paris Saint-Germain, AC Milan, Chelsea and Marseille, and won several domestic titles, as well as numerous individual honours during a glittering career that lasted 18 years following his debut for Liberian club, Mighty Barrolle, in 1985.

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Almost 2.2 million voters were choosing between the 51-year-old Weah and 73-year-old Vice President Joseph Boakai.

Turnout was "nowhere near that of the first round held in October", our correspondent said, attributing the low numbers to a seven-week delay in holding the runoff.

Taylor is serving his 50-year prison sentence in the United Kingdom for war crimes related to the conflict in neighbouring Sierra Leone.

Sirleaf is stepping down after two terms as president. "Many voters are eager for change and therefore less likely to cast their ballots for the incumbent party".

But, though Liberia enjoyed prolonged peace, post-civil war stability and weathering a devastating Ebola outbreak during Johnson Sirleaf tenure, the president is accused of failing to combat poverty and corruption.

Taylor is serving his 50-year prison sentence in the United Kingdom for war crimes related to the conflict in neighbouring Sierra Leone.

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