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Weah has polled well in Bong County, the fiefdom of Liberian warlord and former president Charles Taylor and his ex-wife, Jewel Howard-Taylor, who is the former footballer's vice-presidential pick, attracting controversy to his campaign.

Former worldwide soccer star George Weah is poised to win Liberia's presidency, according to provisional results released by the National Elections Commission.

Voters have chosen a successor to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who is stepping down after 12 years as Africa's first elected female head of state.

But, though Liberia enjoyed prolonged peace, post-civil war stability and weathering a devastating Ebola outbreak during Johnson Sirleaf tenure, the president is accused of failing to combat poverty and corruption.

As news of Mr Weah's victory emerged on Thursday, his supporters began celebrating in the capital Monrovia.

Meanwhile, CDC Vice Chairman for Operations Mr. Mulbah Morlu has urged partisans to remain calm and wait for the official pronouncement from the NEC.According to him, it is clear that the CDC is now the ruling party, but notes that it is just the matter of days for the electoral house to declare them as victor.

The U.S. -based Carter Center said there were "notable improvements" in the handling of Tuesday's vote from the first round in October, echoing positive assessments from other worldwide observers.

With 98 percent of votes counted, Weah has the majority of support in Tuesday's runoff.

He entered politics after his retirement from the game in 2002 and is now a senator in Liberia's parliament.

Legal challenges delayed the vote to replace Ms Sirleaf, and turnout was low.

The victor will replace Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who is stepping down after two terms.

Taylor is serving his 50-year prison sentence in the United Kingdom for war crimes related to the conflict in neighbouring Sierra Leone. "Many voters are eager for change and therefore less likely to cast their ballots for the incumbent party".


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