Soccer star Weah poised to win Liberia's presidency

Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose has congratulated the newly elected President of Liberia, George Opong Weah, describing him as someone destined by God to be president.

State radio correspondents reported unofficial results overnight indicating that former global soccer player George Weah led in several counties, but election authorities warned the two parties to "stop making premature pronouncements".

"I am deeply grateful to my family, my friends, and my loyal supporters who contributed to our campaign during this extremely long election season", Weah said on twitter before the results were announced.

The victor will replace Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa's first female president, who is stepping down after two terms in office.

Sirleaf guided the nation out of ruin following back-to-back 1989-2003 civil wars and through the horrors of the 2014-16 Ebola crisis but is accused of failing to combat poverty and tackle corruption.

Football legend George Weah wins Liberian presidential election
Soccer star Weah poised to win Liberia's presidency

With a total voter turnout of 1,198,984 (56% of registered voters), The CDC candidate received, according to the NEC, 61.5% of the total votes so far, with the UP candidate, Vice President Joseph N. Boakai, getting 38.5%.

Speaking through his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Governor Fayose urged the All Progressives Congress (APC) led federal government and particularly the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to learn from what happened in Liberia and allow the will of the people to prevail in 2018 and 2019 elections. His failure to secure an outright majority forced a run-off.

Weah grew up in Clara Town slum in Monrovia and went on to star for AC Milan, Paris St Germain and Chelsea and become the only African to win FIFA World Player of the Year.

He entered politics after his retirement in 2002 and is now a senator in Liberia's parliament.

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

  • Joey Payne