MONROVIA – A Liberian opposition party formally backed George Weah for president on Thursday despite mounting a prolonged legal fight with his opponent, Vice President Joseph Boakai, against the country’s electoral commission.
Weah and Boakai are due to face each other in a December 26 run-off triggered when the two men took the first and second spot respectively in an October 10 presidential election but failed to win more than 50 percent of ballots cast.
“You are the choice of the people,” Liberty Party Chairman Benjamin Sanvee told a press conference. “Senator Weah, we endorse your presidency because the people have spoken,” he said.
The endorsement by the Liberty Party will give Weah significant clout in the crucial central county of Grand Bassa, which Charles Brumskine (of the Liberty Party) won by a 23-point margin. The vote is seen as a test of Liberia’s stability after back-to-back civil wars between 1989 and 2003 and an Ebola crisis that killed thousands from 2014 to 2016. This would represent Liberia’s first democratic transfer of power in more than seven decades.
The candidate that wins will replace Liberia’s Nobel Peace prize-winning president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who is also the first female elected head of state in Africa. During her reign, she steered the country away from the trauma of war, although poverty remains entrenched and has been one of the main issues of election.
Photo Credits – tribuna