Former Monaco striker George Weah has been elected as President of Liberia.
In the second round of the presidential elections, held on Tuesday, December 27, the 51-year-old took 12 of the 15 counties for a convincing win over former Vice-President Joseph Boakai, 73. Weah is the first soccer player to be elected as head of state anywhere in the world.
“The Liberian people clearly made their choice yesterday and all together we are very confident in the result of the electoral process. #Liberia #Liberia2017,” Weah declared via Twitter.
George Weah grew up in Clara Town, one of the poorest neighbourhoods of the Liberian capital, Monrovia. While playing for a Cameroonian side, he was spotted by then Monaco manager Arsène Wenger, who signed him for AS Monaco for €14,000.
The icon went on to play for several European clubs including Chelsea, Paris-Saint-Germain, and AC Milan, as well, in 1995, becoming the only African ever to be named FIFA World Player of the Year.
Weah recently said of his Wenger, whom he considered his mentor: “He was a father figure and regarded me as his son. This was a man, when racism was at its peak, who showed me love. He wanted me to be on the pitch for him every day.
“Without Arsène, there is no way I would have made it in Europe.”
He is well-loved in Liberia for his work as a UNICEF Ambassador and for coaching the national football team using his own money.