Ecuadorians elected conservative former banker Guillermo Lasso in Sunday’s runoff election to replace President Lenin Moreno and will begin his term on May 24.
Lasso, 65, garnered 52.5% of the vote versus 47.5% that went for economist Andres Arauz, who conceded.
In his victory speech in Ecuador’s capital Quito, Lasso said democracy in the country had triumphed. Ecuadorians used “their right to choose and have chosen a new path that is very different from the one of the last 14 years in Ecuador," he said.
With a conciliatory tone very different from the combative one on the campaign trial, Arauz congratulated Lasso saying “this is an electoral setback, but in no way it is a political or moral defeat because our project is for life.”
Arauz, 36, from the Union of Hope coalition and a protégé of former President Rafael Correa, was leading Lasso in the first round of voting in February.
Lasso of the Creating Opportunities center-right political movement and third-time presidential candidate had finished second twice before, to Correa in 2013 and Moreno in 2017.
As a procedural matter, Ecuador’s Electoral Council has to declare the official winner.