Liberia’s electoral commission said on Monday that claims of fraud brought by a presidential candidate in last month’s election did not have sufficient evidence, delivering a preliminary conclusion of an investigation. Former footballer George Weah was initially set to face Vice-President Joseph Boakai to determine who will replace Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. But third-place finisher Charles Brumskine and his Liberty Party contested the outcome of the first round, claiming gross irregularities, and the Supreme Court this month suspended the run-off until the electoral commission can investigate Brumskine’s claim.
“According to the hearing officer, the Liberty Party did not have sufficient evidence to prove their case. It was denied,” commission spokesman Prince Dunbar said by telephone.
It now goes to the NEC’s board of commissioners to ratify the conclusion, after which the plaintiffs can still take the case back to the Supreme Court for a final ruling.
A successful vote would be Liberia’s first democratic transfer of power in over 70 years, but the poll delay has raised tensions.