In Summary
  • Mr Weah will now succeed the continent’s first elected female head of state, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

  • He topped the first round of voting in October with 38.4 percent of ballots but failed to win the 50 per cent necessary to avoid a run-off.

  • Chelsea icon Didier Drogba has already sent Weah a congratulatory message.

MONROVIA

Former football star George Weah won Liberia’s presidential run-off with a projected 61.5 per cent of the vote, the country’s election commission said Thursday.

Mr Weah handily beat Vice President Joseph Boakai, who secured 38.5 per cent, the National Election Commission (NEC) said, with 98.1 per cent of votes counted.

Mr Weah will now succeed the continent’s first elected female head of state, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who took over at the helm of Africa’s oldest republic in 2006.

“The Liberian people clearly made their choice... and all together we are very confident in the result of the electoral process,” tweeted Mr Weah.

Mr Weah topped the first round of voting in October with 38.4 per cent of ballots but failed to win the 50 per cent necessary to avoid a run-off. Boakai came second with 28.8 per cent.

FIFA

Mr Weah is the only African ever to have won FIFA’s World Player of the Year and the coveted Ballon D’Or.

The 51-year-old starred at top-flight European football clubs Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan in the 1990s before playing briefly in England for Chelsea and Manchester City later in his career.

Chelsea icon Didier Drogba has already sent Weah a congratulatory message.

“Is it President Weah?” said the New Dawn newspaper, referring to a man who had the backing of heavyweights including former warlord Prince Johnson and apparently the covert support of outgoing president Sirleaf.

TOO EARLY

Earlier, Mr Boakai, a 72-year-old public servant of four decades standing, said it was too early to crow victory.

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