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World

Lasso wins Ecuador presidency as Arauz concedes

  • Earlier, television stations Ecuavisa and Teleamazonas published the results of the Cedatos exit poll that gave Lasso almost a 6.5 percentage point lead over Arauz.
Updated 12 Apr, 2021

QUITO: Former banker Guillermo Lasso won Ecuador's presidential election on Sunday after his socialist opponent Andres Arauz conceded.

Conservative Lasso declared himself president-elect and accepted the "challenge" of changing Ecuador's "destiny."

With 93 percent of votes counted, Lasso held a lead of almost five percentage points over economist Arauz.

"On May 24 we will assume with responsibility the challenge of changing our country's destiny and achieving for all Ecuador the opportunities and prosperity we all yearn for," said Lasso.

Economist Arauz, who is best known as the protege of former president Rafael Correa, was magnanimous despite earlier claiming victory following a tight exit poll.

"I congratulate him on his electoral triumph today and I will show him our democratic convictions," said Arauz.

Lasso had 52.51 percent of the vote compared to Arauz's 47.49 percent with 93.14 percent of votes counted, the National Electoral Council said.

Seasoned politician Lasso, 65, has twice before finished second in presidential votes.

Earlier, television stations Ecuavisa and Teleamazonas published the results of the Cedatos exit poll that gave Lasso almost a 6.5 percentage point lead over Arauz.

But the stations also said the Clima Social pollsters had indicated the result was a technical draw and thus decided not to publish their figures.

Arauz's campaign team used that poll to claim victory by 1.6 percentage points.

"Thank you Ecuador! This is a victory for the Ecuadoran people," Arauz said on Twitter. "No one will prevent the course of history."

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