Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Ecowas gives clean bill of health to Liberian election

Ecowas gives clean bill of health to Liberian election

Voters in the western African country of Liberia are casting their ballots on Tuesday to elect a new head of state as current President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf prepares to step down after 12 years in power.

The 1995 FIFA World Player of the Year and Ballon d'Or victor, succeeds President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, in a contest that completes the country's first democratic transition of power in more than 70 years.

"As a longstanding friend, the United States applauds the people of Liberia for exercising their democratic right to vote in the historic presidential and legislative elections", said a statement from US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert.

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The election commission is ready to listen to official complaints but vote-counting will continue, spokesman Henry Boyd Flomo said.

"It is not often that you have a former player who becomes a president of a country and so well done Georgie and I would say just for him to keep his enthusiasm and his desire to learn and to win".

"I would like to congratulate one of my former players, who became president of Liberia, George Weah", said Wenger in a press conference.

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Liberia with an estimated population of 4.5 million has 2.18 million registered voters for the elections which were held in 2,080 polling centres nationwide.

Worldwide observers said Tuesday's vote went smoothly despite late starts in some counties. A runoff election is likely.

Twenty candidates are running to replace Sirleaf, Africa's first elected female leader, who is stepping down after a maximum two terms in office. She led the country's recovery from a 14-year civil war and guided it through the Ebola crisis in 2014-15 that killed almost 5,000 Liberians.

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