Left-winger claims Ecuador presidential poll win, but rival alleges 'fraud'

In Ecuador, leftist Government candidate, Lenin Moreno has claimed victory in the Presidential elections.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange dodged an eviction order in Ecuador's Sunday election, after the right-wing candidate who had vowed to kick him out of the country's London embassy lost a presidential election.

Correa tweeted the early results Sunday night which showed Moreno winning by two points and sought to quell calls for a recount by adding it was an "irreversible trend" and that the "Citizens' Revolution had returned to triumph in Ecuador".

Moreno who has been wheelchair bound after being shot and paralysed in 1998, is well known for his advocacy work for people with disabilities and supporting public education.

Close to 12.5 million Ecuadoreans in the country, along with nearly 400,000 emigrants around the world, were eligible to vote in Sunday's election.

Preliminary figures released by the country's National Electoral Council (CNE) had Moreno with 51.1 percent for the votes cast, and Lasso at 48.9 percent, with 96.22 percent of the votes counted.

"Official results from the National Electoral Council, a difference of more than two percentage points".

"We won't fold our arms and stand by", he said on Twitter.

The Organization of American States said its mission of electoral observers that visited at random 480 voting centers nationwide found no discrepancies between the tallies and the official results and encouraged Lasso to issue complaints through institutional channels.

"Yes, all, but especially the poor", Moreno said in a speech to some 2,000 supporters outside the presidential palace. However, Assange has adamantly denied any wrongdoing and said the charges were politically motivated to extradite him to the USA, where he is wanted for his damaging work released by WikiLeaks.

"Ecuador deserves the ethical responsibility from its political actors to recognize the democratic decision made by the people at the ballot box", said council president Juan Pablo Pozo. One of the exit polls - which accurately predicted the results of the first round - gave Lasso a 6 percent lead over Moreno.

"I think the circumstances favor a narrow win for the opposition", said Sebastián Hurtado, a political analyst in Quito.

"I cordially invite Lasso to leave Ecuador within 30 days (with or without his tax haven millions)", he wrote, alluding to claims that the conservative banker has money stashed overseas.

It would also buck a trend in South America, where right-leaning governments have come to power in Argentina, Brazil, and Peru recently as a commodities boom ended and corruption accusations grew.

The post Ecuador's ruling leftist party celebrates win as opposition alleges fraud appeared first on PBS NewsHour. "Lenin is our president", President Correa said.

Lasso shared images of the protests on his Twitter feed, saying: "All of you are like the majority of Ecuadoreans who voted for a change".

As a result, scores of protestors took to the streets waving Ecuador's flags and chanting "We don't want to be Venezuela!"

  • Leroy Wright