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Monday, April 24, 2017

And the Votes are IN !! May I Have the Envelope Please?

In my blog article preceeding this one, I explained how voting works here in Ecuador.  In February, we voted for a new President.  But, the outcome wasn't a clear majority (as explained in the previous blog).  So, the 2 candidates slated for the April 2nd runoff had approximately 6 more weeks to campaign.

On Sunday, April 2nd, everyone headed to the voting centers again.  It was a task that only took a few minutes from arrival to departure as the ballot had only 2 choices on it...either him or the other guy.

By that evening, the votes had been counted and the announcement made Lenin Moreno won. Without getting into all the nitty gritty of what he stands for and what the other guy (Lasso) stands for, let's just make it simple...Moreno is of the same party as the departing President Raphael Correa.

Unfortunately (does this sound a tad familar?) the results were not a slam dunk, ultra clear pointer to the winner.   Moreno won by a very slim margin of only 2 point some percent.  Cue:  Lasso.   The loser became vehemently vocal and acused the election as being rigged and fraudulent.  Thing is, he wasn't showing anyone any proof or foundation for the accusations.  The election was overseen by all kinds of observers from other countries along with other precautions.  Lasso filed for a recount.  The national election council agreed to do a recount, but of only 10% (or 1.2 million) of the ballots cast and primarily from districts where both parties had noted some 'irregularities'.  Lasso's party 'CREO' was invited to participate in overseeing the recount, but chose not to.

After the recount was completed, Moreno actually GAINED about 2,000 votes (.001%), resulting in reconfirming Moreno's win with 51.16% to Lasso's 48.84%.   However, Lasso would have nothing to do with it and continued to demand a total recount, claiming the recount was fraudulent because they (CREO) did not participate (they had refused to).

BTW...Lasso ran for President in 2013 and lost that one, too.

Sighhhhhh.

On May 24th, 2017 Lenin Moreno will be sworn in as the new President of Ecuador and Jorge Glas as his Vice President.  President Rafael Correa and his family plan to move to Belgium (where his wife was born).

So, who are the 'new' guys?  I'll give you a few interesting tidbits.

  • Rafael Correa 
    • Has been our President for the past 10 years.  The first 2 came from stepping into the role after the prior president was ousted.  Then, he was re-elected to 2 four-year terms.
    • President Correa is 54.
  • Lenin Moreno
    • Served as Vice President, under Correa, from 2007 - 2013 after which he served as the United Nations Special Envoy on Disability and Accessibillity.  For his advocacy, he was nominated for the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize.
    • What's with all the disability stuff?  Well, in 1998 Moreno was robbed at gunpoint outside a grocery store in Quito.  He handed over his wallet and keys to his car, but he was shot in the back which left him a wheelchair-bound paraplegic.
    • During his first year in the office of Vice President, Moreno investigated the state of disabled people in Ecuador. At the time the government’s entire budget for disabled services was approximately 100,000 U.S. dollars.  Moreno increased the budget for disabled people more than fifty-fold. The state currently assists over 600,000 disabled Ecuadorians, and provides housing and income for 15,000 people and prostheses for another 4,000.  (Source = Wikipedia)
    • Lenin Moreno is 64.
  • Jorge Glas
    • Served as Vice President to Rafael Correa for the past 4 years and will now continue in that role under Moreno.
    • He has known and been friends with president Correa since their time as boy scouts.  (Source = Wikipedia)
    • He is a mere 47...and Vice President of a COUNTRY!!!
....and that's the way it is.....as of today.


Dano

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About Me

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Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador
This is all about my transition from an American lifestyle and culture to my newest adventure, life in Cuenca and greater Ecuador. I'll be recapping some of my day-to-day experiences (and mishaps) to highlight what it's like to live here.

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