KOT reactions after Uhuru congratulates George Weah

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George Weah won the first round of the election - but not by enough to avoid a run-off vote. AGENCIES via STAR NEWS KENYA

Kenyans have expressed mixed reactions after President Uhuru Kenyatta congratulated former soccer star George Weah for winning the Liberian Presidential poll.

President Uhuru on Thursday lauded the people of Liberia for the peaceful poll and offered his support to the new head of state.

Weah is set to succeed incumbent Ellen Johnson Sirleaf next month making it the country’s first democratic transition in over 70 years.

“My very warmest congratulations to President-elect George Weah. His excellence and persistence have now won him the leadership of his people. Kenya sends its very best wishes to him and his administration. We look forward to closer ties in the years ahead. Congratulations!”

Read: Soccer star George Weah poised for victory in Liberia, backers say

George Weah had tweeted declaring his resolve to serve Liberia saying: “My fellow Liberians, I deeply feel the emotion of all the nation. I measure the importance and the responsibility of the immense task which I embrace today. Change is on.”

Tweep Pasca Modiangi called on President Uhuru to ensure there is democratic space and giving the people space to practice their rights on various issues including elections.

“It is sad that you are celebrating democracy in Liberia which you can’t reciprocate to your own people like what we witnessed in the repeat polls.”

Evans Njomo lauded Weah’s election saying he is the best leader for Liberia given his accolades in football despite growing up in Clara Town slum in Monrovia and becoming the only African to win Fifa World Player of the Year, starring for AC Milan, Paris St Germain and Chelsea.

“He has won so many accolades as a footballer. I am sure he has the necessary attitude to be a nice president.”

Otieno Mokaya accused President Uhuru of ignoring the problems back home.

“You should learn a thing or two from that, no one died for him to win; he did not congratulate the police for killing his opponents; he did not send envoys to solicit for your congratulatory message. He won, did you?”

Ken Eleza, on the other hand, joined Uhuru in wishing Liberia well as Africa’s oldest modern republic recovers from among other problems a 14-year civil war ended in 2003.

“Congratulations are in order for President-elect George Weah. May Liberia progress in democracy and development.”

Weah will be deputised by Jewel Howard-Taylor, the ex-wife of Charles Taylor, a former president of Liberia who is serving 50 years in a British prison for war crimes committed in neighbouring Sierra Leone.