Tegucigalpa — Honduras’s leftist presidential candidate Xiomara Castro was headed for election victory Tuesday — making historical past as the primary lady to manipulate the Central American nation — along with her rival from the ruling rightwing Nationwide Celebration conceding defeat.
With simply over 52 % of votes counted, former first girl Castro led with 53.49 % in contrast with 33.98 % for her nearest challenger, the conservative Nasry Asfura.
Whereas Hondurans have been nervously awaiting the ultimate election outcomes, Asfura stated he met with the LIBRE get together candidate and her household to concede and congratulate her.
“I want that God might enlighten and information her in order that her administration does the perfect” for Honduras, Asfura stated in a video launched by the Nationwide Celebration (PN).
The carefully watched ballot got here 4 years after presidential elections marred by fraud claims and violence, and the PN was fast to spotlight “the local weather of peace and tranquility within the nation” regardless that the ruling get together was ousted from energy.
Washington additionally hailed the Honduran individuals and their “free and truthful election.”
“We congratulate them and President Elect @XiomaraCastroZ and stay up for working collectively to strengthen democratic establishments, promote inclusive financial progress, and struggle corruption,” U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken tweeted.
Castro’s husband Manuel Zelaya was deposed in a 2009 coup supported by the navy, enterprise elites and the political proper.
On Sunday, she vowed to guide “a reconciliation authorities” in a rustic wracked by violent crime, drug trafficking, rampant corruption and large-scale migration to america.
Castro’s victory would break 12 years of PN rule and 4 a long time of hegemony shared with the Liberal Celebration.
There have been no stories of violence associated to Sunday’s vote, a far cry from the lethal protests that broke out when Juan Orlando Hernandez received a second successive time period in a 2017 election that the opposition stated was stolen. Greater than 30 individuals died as authorities cracked down on that month-long protest.
The European Union on Tuesday welcomed the “largely calm and peaceable ambiance” of the newest election, although the run-up was marked by “unprecedented ranges of political violence and intense polarization.”
An observer mission on the bottom additionally famous “numerous deficiencies within the institutional administration and preparation of the elections,” in accordance with an announcement from the workplace of EU international coverage chief Josep Borrell.
Vote counting has been gradual, with the primary half of ballots arriving on the Nationwide Electoral Council in digital format whereas the remaining have to be bodily delivered.
The marketing campaign was bitter, with the Nationwide Celebration attempting to connect a “communist” label to Castro and attacking her assist for legalizing abortion and same-sex marriage, sensitive topics in deeply conservative Honduras.
In flip, Castro branded Hernandez a “narco-dictator.”
Corruption and drug-trafficking scandals have engulfed Hernandez and lots of in his internal circle.
In the meantime, Asfura was accused in 2020 of embezzling $700,000 of public cash and the— a trove of leaked paperwork exposing offshore accounts — linked him to affect peddling in Costa Rica.
Some 59 % of Honduras’s 10 million individuals dwell in poverty.
Unemployment jumped from 5.7 % in 2019 to 10.9 % the next 12 months, largely due to the coronavirus pandemic, in accordance with a research by the Autonomous College.
Washington has been protecting an in depth eye on the election, with Honduras the start line for waves of migrant caravans attempting to achieve america.
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