Liberia election commission finalising results of Tuesday's polls
Liberians are waiting with bated breath as the National Elections Commission (NEC) slowly receives and tally results from 5,890 polling places for the October 10 presidential and legislative results.
The 15 counties have 19 magistrates for the collation.
Under Liberia electoral laws, the election management body has 15 days after voting day to declare results. However, it is expected that by the fifth day, the president-elect will be known.
The delay could be attributable to the bad nature of roads leading to hard-to-reach areas during a 6-month rainy season.
As predicted by pundits, early results pouring in indicate a straight battle between incumbent President George Weah and former Vice President, Joseph N. Boakai.
But many others insist that with 20 candidates, there is likely to be a second round.
After a day's national holiday for voting, Liberians are going about their normal daily activities, with many others glued to their radio sets listening to the results as to who out of the 20 presidential candidates leads the country for the next 6 years.
Each polling place results will be sent to their respective county Magistrates (regions) for collation and onward transmission to the national headquarters for declaration.
A Graphic Online team currently in Liberia covering the elections observed that the poll, which commenced at 8am and ended at 6pm on Tuesday, was generally peaceful despite the initial complaints of the slow process of voting at some centres.
No major incidents were recorded except some areas that had delayed voting.
On the voting day, voters queued as early as 4am with the old and people with disabilities given priority to vote.
At each polling precinct, personnel of the Liberia Red Cross in their red and white vests were at hand to provide first aid for voters.
In an interview with Graphic Online’s Kwamena Nyamekye, Mr Richards Gweh, a member of the Red Cross said, the move was part of their contribution to a successful elections and peaceful Liberia.
Over 500 local and international observers were accredited by the NEC for the elections.
In almost every polling precinct, observers were seen watching the processes keenly.
ECOWAS, on September 10, deployed 15 Long Term Observers to all the 15 counties to serve as detectors of challenges and others for the regional body to be able to engage in early warning mechanisms for preventive diplomacy.
About a week to the election day, the West Africa regional bloc deployed an additional 80 short-term observers for the voting process.
The entire ECOWAS Observation Team is headed by Prof Attahiru Jega, the former National Independence Election Commissioner of Nigeria.
Under the legislative elections, the country will elect 30 senators for the upper house and 73 for the lower house.