Liberians went to the polls Tuesday in a tough race for incumbent President George Weah. The 57-year-old former soccer star won office in 2017 after promising to create jobs, battle corruption, and set up an economic and war crimes court to investigate the horrific civil war that killed 250,000 people between 1989 and 2003.
But the court was never established, and opponents accuse Weah and his Congress for Democratic Change party of economic mismanagement. Graft scandals led the United States to impose sanctions on senior Liberian officials, including Weah’s chief of staff.
Yet a lack of fresh opposition figures could earn Weah a second term. He faced 19 candidates, but the main challenger was former Vice President Joseph Boakai, 78, whom Weah defeated in the 2017 runoff.
Boakai, dubbed “Sleepy Joe” for allegedly falling asleep at public events, has been in government for four decades. Provisional results are expected today.