Ex-footballer George Weah elected President of Liberia

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Weah, who won the Fifa World Player of the Year award in 1995, will become Liberia's next president after winning 61.5 per cent of the vote and defeating the ruling Unity Party's Joseph Boakai in the 2017 election.

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

Weah (51) starred in top-flight European football teams Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan in the 1990s before playing briefly for Chelsea and Manchester City later in his career.

The former football star's campaign - under the Coalition for Democratic Change banner - appealed to the youth vote, while incumbent Vice President Mr Boakai was seen as old and out of touch.

Weah, who topped the first round of voting but did not secure the 50 percent needed to win outright, is heavily favoured to win the presidential runoff.

Former world footballer of the year George Weah has won Liberia's presidential election.

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It will be Liberia's first democratic transition since 1944 and follows two devastating civil wars.

But Mr Weah's election is not without controversy, as his running mate is Jewel Taylor, former wife of the warlord and ex-President Charles Taylor, who is serving a jail sentence in the United Kingdom for war crimes.

Boakai has waged a bitter legal battle over problems with queue control and voter identification in the October 10 first round, and said he would accept the result provided the National Elections Commission (NEC) met "all of the standards".

On Tuesday polling stations displayed voter lists as a mark of transparency for the run-off.

He lost to Sirleaf, the president he will replace, in the second round of voting in 2005 and unsuccessfully ran for vice-president in 2011.

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