Weah set to become president of Liberia

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has sent a congratulatory message to George Weah for emerging president of Liberia.

Weah supporters paraded through the streets of the capital Monrovia and honked vehicle horns to celebrate the news.

With 98.1 per cent of ballots counted, Weah had secured 61.5 per cent of the vote, according to statistics from the National Elections Commission.

It means Weah will succeed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to become president next month, the country's first democratic transition since 1944.

Turnout was said to be low, at around 56 per cent, or roughly two million of the country's 4.6 million people.

But many Liberians criticised the outgoing president for not doing enough to root out poverty and corruption and appeared eager for change.

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Weah made his name at Paris Saint-Germain in the early 1990s, but it was at AC Milan - at a time when Serie A was the strongest league in the world - that he really shone.

The long-delayed run-off vote between Weah and Vice President Joseph Boakai takes place on Tuesday (today).

Current Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger signed him for Monaco in 1988, and in a recent interview Weah said he would not have enjoyed such success were it not for the Frenchman.

Also, he was part of the Liberian side that lost 1-0 to the Super Eagles in the group stage of the 2002 Africa Cup of Nations in Mali.

The revered footballer was one of the best strikers in world football becoming the only African footballer to have won Fifa World Player of the Year and the coveted Ballon D'Or, in 1995.

He won 38.4% of votes in the first round on 10 October, while his opponent Boakai came second with 28.8%.

  • Adam Floyd