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Liberia - George Weah's tilhængere utilfredse med truende valgnederlag!

LIBERIA: Sirleaf heads for victory as authorities study Weah’s complaint

IRINnews.org, 10. november 2005

Der er måske ved at komme lidt spændinger i Liberias skrøbelige fred. Der er blot to år siden det lykkedes at afslutte 14 års borgerkrig, og nu afventer blot den endelige afgørelse fra valget mellem de to hovedrivaler. Selvom Liberia er en relativt lille land, er der store politiske forskellige, og i de områder, hvor opbakningen bag de to rivaler er størst forekommer det usandsynligt, at det samme ikke er tilfældet i større dele af landet. Sådanne forhold resulterer nemt i anklager om valgsvindel, og det er lige netop, hvad George Weahs tilhængere nu er i færd med, her hvor valgnederlaget er en realitet. Derfor har Valgkommissionen indledt undersøgelser af valget.

Utilfredse George Weah tilhængere - ©  Claire Soares/IRIN
MONROVIA, 10 Nov 2005 (IRIN) - Liberia’s electoral authorities have begun investigating allegations of fraud filed by soccer star George Weah, as his rival, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, on Thursday consolidated her lead in the final round of the race for the presidency.

With results in from almost 90 percent of polling stations across the West African nation, Sirleaf had 59.2 percent of the votes, an 18 point lead over Weah, and the prospect of becoming Africa’s first elected female president within her grasp.

But Weah, who topped the first round on 11 October with an eight point margin, has claimed that the second-round ballot on Tuesday was not free and fair, and shown ballot papers that he said were tampered with.

The National Elections Commission said it had received a formal complaint from Weah’s Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) party on Thursday.

“I want them to intervene,” Weah told IRIN.

Frances Johnson-Morris, the head of the commission, said an invesigation would begin immediately.

"It's too soon to say the effect. Let's wait and see the magnitude of the complaint before we begin to see if it will affect the outcome,” she told a press conference.

But at Weah’s party headquarters, scores of supporters were adamant about what would happen if the former AC Milan and Chelsea striker lost.

“No Weah, no peace,” they chanted, jumping up and down as Weah pulled into the compound, fresh from meetings with UN officials and the Nigerian and Ghanaian ambassadors. “We want justice,” the crowd yelled.

UN peacekeepers stepped up security outside the election body’s headquarters on Thursday, as rumours circulated on the streets about a possible demonstration by Weah’s supporters.

“We will react robustly to any effort to disrupt the hard-won peace that this country now enjoys,” Alan Doss, the head of the UN mission in Liberia, told reporters.

On a street corner in Monrovia, people listen eagerly to their radios, anxious to know who has won the presidential run-off

Der bliver lyttet efter nye resulter fra valget - ©  IRIN
It has been two years now since Liberia’s civil war ended, a 14-year conflict that killed an estimated quarter of a million people, forced hundreds of thousands of others to flee their homes and left the country’s infrastructure in ruins.

Doss declined to make a judgment on the fraud allegations made by Weah, saying that the first arbiter was the elections commission.

“Any allegation of any fraud is serious and we do not want allegations of fraud to mar the election so these allegations have to be taken seriously and looked into,” he said.

Some of the 300-odd international observers began delivering their assessments of the second round vote on Thursday.

“The run-off election has been free and transparent,” Elie-Victor Essomba Tsoungui, head of the African Union observer team, told reporters.

The European Union mission said that Liberia’s 1.3 million registered voters had been “provided with a choice between two candidates in a genuinely competitive election process.”

Observers urged the elections commission to deal with any complaints as quickly as possible, and for Liberians to remain calm in the meantime.

At Sirleaf’s Unity Party (UP) headquarters in downtown Monrovia, supporters were trying hard to keep their celebrations under wraps.

But many could not resist bursting into a chorus of “When you are UP, you are up”, and waving pictures of Sirleaf.

“It’s going to be a big proud moment not just for us, but for the whole of Africa,” said 25-year old technician, Benjamin Krawoin.

© IRIN - This article appeared originally on IRIN News.org and is published by engelund.dk according a general agreement. To view the original article, please click here.
IRIN (Integrated Regional Information Networks) is a project of UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
[This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies.]


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Opdateret d. 11.11.2005