Cyprus Mail

Liberia presidential election heads for November run-off vote

file photo: liberia's ruling cdc party holds final rally before election in monrovia
FILE PHOTO: A supporter of the leader of Liberia's ruling party Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), President and former soccer player George Weah, holds a national flag during Weah's final campaign rally for the presidential elections in Monrovia, Liberia October 8, 2023. REUTERS/Carielle Doe/File Photo

Liberia’s electoral commission on Tuesday scheduled a presidential election run-off for November after results showed that the two frontrunners, President George Weah and opposition leader Joseph Boakai, had failed to secure enough votes.

Weah holds a slim lead at 43.83% of the vote, while Boakai has 43.44%, according to tallied results from 100% of polling places, the West African nation’s election commission said.

Commission chairperson Davidetta Browne Lansanah said the run-off vote would be held on November 14. She said there was a record turnout of 78.86% of around 2.4 million registered voters.

The October 10 election has been widely seen as a test of support for former soccer star Weah, 57, who was criticised in his first term by the opposition and Liberia’s international partners for not doing enough to tackle corruption.

On his campaign trail, he asked voters for more time to fulfil his promise to rebuild the nation’s broken economy, institutions and infrastructure, pledging to pave more roads if reelected.

Liberia is struggling to recover from two civil wars that killed more than 250,000 people between 1989 and 2003 and from a 2013-16 Ebola epidemic that killed thousands.

Boakai, 78, was Weah’s main challenger and campaigned on what he called the need to rescue Liberia from alleged mismanagement by Weah’s administration.

liberia soccer weah's political quest
File Photo: Liberian President George Weah wins the Ballon d’Or while playing football for AC Milan
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