Liberian President George Weah concedes election defeat to Joseph Boakai


Liberian leader and football legend George Weah has conceded defeat to opposition leader Joseph Boakai after a tight presidential run-off, saying it was "time to put national interest above personal interest".

With 99.5 percent of votes counted, opposition leader Joseph Boakai has garnered 50.89 percent to Weah's 49.11 percent, according to Liberia's election commission.

"The results announced tonight, though not final, indicate that... Boakai is in a lead that we cannot surpass," Weah said in a speech on national radio late on Friday.

He said his CDC party "has lost the election but Liberia has won," adding: "This is the time for graciousness in defeat".

He had spoken to Boakai "to congratulate him on his victory".

Boakai, 78, emerged neck-and-neck with 57-year-old Weah in the first round last month, but below the 50 percent needed to secure an outright victory, leading to Tuesday's run-off.


The results mark a turnaround from the 2017 presidential vote which swept Weah to power, with Boakai losing by a large margin.

But critics have accused his government of corruption and him of failing to follow through promises to alleviate poverty and improve the country's crumbling infrastructure.

'Largely' peaceful

Weah will remain president until the handover of power in January – the second democratic transfer of power in over seven decades.

Read more on RFI English

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