Home » News » Leftist Castro proclaims himself the winner of the presidential elections in Honduras

Leftist Castro proclaims himself the winner of the presidential elections in Honduras



General elections in Honduras


© Reuters / JOSE CABEZAS
General elections in Honduras

By Gustavo Palencia and David Alire Garcia

TEGUCIGALPA, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Honduran opposition leader Xiomara Castro declared herself the winner in Sunday’s presidential elections, amid preliminary results that pointed to a landslide victory that would return the left to power for the first time since her husband was ousted in a coup 12 years ago.

With 51.45% of the votes counted, Castro, wife of former President Manuel Zelaya, garnered 53.61% support, while Nasry Asfura, mayor of the capital and candidate of the ruling National Party (PNH), obtained 33.87%, according to preliminary official figures.

Unlike what happened four years ago, the elections, which could give Honduras its first female president, appeared to be close to being concluded without violent protests, as happened then when there was a sudden turnaround in the results, after the count was stopped. I stopped for hours.

This year’s elections were held in a context of corruption scandals and social discontent in the Central American nation, fueled by an economy in crisis and chronic violence from organized crime, which has pushed a record number of Hondurans to abandon their place of office. origin.

Castro, a self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist in a country where very few women hold positions of power, vowed during his campaign to end corruption.

“We made history,” he wrote on his Twitter account.

“We reversed authoritarianism and we reversed continuity,” she told supporters Sunday night, surrounded by colleagues from her Libertad y Refundación (Libre) Party, advisers and family members, including her husband, who was overthrown when he tried to change the Constitution, according to opponents. , to perpetuate themselves in power.

ALLIANCES

Castro, 62, also pledged to strengthen participatory democracy through popular consultations, a tool that has been used repeatedly by leftist leaders in the region.

Critics have painted her as a dangerous leftist radical and the congratulations of the Venezuelan president, Nicolás Maduro, made them fear a future alliance.

However, business leaders were quick to build bridges.

“(The) private sector reiterates its commitment to do everything necessary for its management to be an example of transformation,” wrote Eduardo Facusse, a leader of the country’s main chamber of commerce, on his Twitter account on Sunday night.

Castro, who ran for the presidency in 2013, responded: “We are going to work hand in hand with the private sector to improve the investment climate with the aim of creating jobs.”

The woman, with a degree in business administration, knew how to take advantage of the unpopularity of the outgoing president, Juan Orlando Hernández, who modified the Constitution to allow his questioned reelection in 2017 and was implicated in a drug trafficking case in a federal court in the United States.

Hernández has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, but his party’s candidate, Asfura, struggled to keep his distance from the president during the election campaign.

On Sunday night, Asfura asked the other presidential candidates and voters on his Twitter account to wait for the vote count to finish.

The fate of the 128 members of the Honduran Congress was also up in the air, as the electoral referee has not yet released the preliminary results. If the HNP can maintain control, it could block many of Castro’s proposals.

(Reporting by Gustavo Palencia and David Alire Garcia; Edited by Adriana Barrera and Diego Oré)

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.