Liberia is set to hold its presidential and parliamentary elections on Tuesday, with twenty candidates, including incumbent George Weah, competing to lead the country of five million. Weah won the election in 2017 after promising to tackle poverty, create jobs, build roads, and end corruption. However, anger is growing over persistently high levels of corruption and the cost of living. The elections are taking place on the 20th anniversary of the 2003 Accra Peace Agreement, which ended the second Liberian civil war. The main issues voters are looking at include corruption, poverty, and the country’s ranking on Transparency International’s corruption perceptions index. The US has slapped sanctions on three Liberian government officials for engaging in corrupt practices. The country ranks 178 out of 191 countries on the UN’s Human Development Index despite its wealth of natural resources.
The main presidential candidates are George Weah, Joseph Boakai, and Alexander B Cummings. Weah, a former international football star, won the election in 2017 after promising to tackle poverty, create jobs, build roads, and end corruption. Boakai, known as “Sleepy Joe,” served as vice president between 2006 and 2018, and has a progressive agenda in areas like business financing, women’s representation, and eco-tourism.