Former conservative banker, Guillermo Lasso won the second round of the Ecuadorian presidential ballot.
The 65-year-old won 52.52% of the vote with almost all votes counted, while left-wing candidate Andres Arauz won 47.48% of the vote, the polling station said on Sunday.
The two candidates were on opposite ends of the political spectrum.
Arauz was seen as the protégé of former President Rafael Correa and a victory would likely have seen him continue Correa’s policy of “21st century socialism”, increase subsidies and oppose the austerity program demanded by the Fund. international monetary policy (IMF).
Lasso meanwhile campaigned on a liberal economic platform and wanted to create jobs and attract foreign investors.
He is a member of the ultra-conservative Opus Dei association and is strictly against same-sex marriage and abortion.
The vote marked Lasso’s third presidential candidacy.
“For years, I have dreamed of being able to serve Ecuadorians so that the country can move forward and we can all have better lives.
“Today you made it possible. This is the start of a new era of rapprochement, ” he told supporters in the city of Guayaquil.
Arauz conceded defeat and said he would phone his rival to congratulate him.
“It is an electoral failure, but not a political or moral defeat,” he told his supporters on Sunday outside his home.
The South American country was in a deep economic crisis due to falling oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic.
The previous president, Lenin Moreno, had recently seen his popularity drop and did not stand for re-election. (dpa / NAN)
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