MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — Polls opened Saturday morning in Liberia for a twice-delayed Senate vote amid concern the process could facilitate the spread of Ebola.

A total of 1.9 million voters are registered to participate in 15 Senate races throughout the country contested by 139 candidates.

Originally scheduled for October, the vote was pushed back to Dec. 16 as Liberia struggled to contain the Ebola epidemic, which has killed nearly 3,300 people in the country. Officials then pushed it back four more days to Saturday.

Critics have questioned whether the polls can be safe and credible. Health authorities have distributed 4,700 thermometers and 10,000 bottles of sanitizer to polling places to address the concerns.

The most high-profile race pits opposition leader George Weah against Robert Sirleaf, son of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

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