Ecuador Opposition Loser Says He Will Challenge the Results

Jerome Frank
April 11, 2017

It would also give a boost to a struggling leftist movement in South America, as right-leaning governments have come to power in Argentina, Brazil and Peru recently as a commodities boom ended, economies flagged and corruption scandals grew.

Supporters of ruling party candidate Lenin Moreno celebrated their apparent election win and accused their opponents of trying to disavow results from Sunday's presidential runoff.

This story has been corrected to say that while almost 96 percent of votes counted and Moreno has claimed victory, he has not formally been declared the victor.

The opposition candidate in Ecuador's presidential election, Guillermo Lasso, filed on Monday a case alleging electoral fraud with the Organization of American States (OAS).

"They've toyed with popular will", former banker Lasso told Ecuadorean television last night, asking for a recount and saying he was the real victor of the vote.

Speaking to supporters, Lasso said that it was unfathomable that an exit poll that showed him winning by 6 percentage points could have been off by such a large margin.

Moreno, the political successor to President Rafael Correa, had said he would allow Assange to stay.

The official results accurately represent the "will of the people", a senior global observer said Monday.

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Results showed the socialist former vice-president Lenin Moreno on 51 per cent with 96 per cent of votes counted in yesterday's second-round run-off.

Economists say that the next president will have a hard task slashing a deficit that ballooned in the final years of Correa's government, as oil prices crashed and the dollarized Ecuadorean economy lost competitiveness compared to its neighbors. "We must go to the streets and say "don't steal my vote" because we want a change in Ecuador".

But Moreno had urged supporters to wait for official results that he said would confirm his "triumph".

A bitter Lasso, who had earlier proclaimed himself victorious based on a top pollster's exit poll, disputed the results that would extend a decade-long leftist rule in oil-rich Ecuador.

"They've toyed with popular will, we are going to defend the will of the Ecuadoran people in the face of an attempted fraud that aims to install what would be an illegitimate government", Lasso said, Al Jazeera reported. "Thank you to the Latin American presidents who have called and sent messages of congratulations and affection", Moreno wrote on Twitter.

"I'm going to be the president of everyone but fundamentally those who are poorest", said Moreno.

On his Twitter account shortly after the results became known, Assange took a jab at Lasso's pledge.

However, their questioning of the current result is only shared by the opposition leader Lasso as most elections observer missions who were present in the country in February for the first round as well as Sunday for the second have dismissed any issues with the results. Lasso, a conservative, had said that if he won, he would evict Assange within 30 days of taking office.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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