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Ecuador elects youngest ever President to rebuild ‘destroyed’ country

Written by on October 16, 2023

After voting for 10 hours on Sunday, Oct. 15, Ecuadorians elected banana empire heir, Daniel Noboa, 35, making him the nations youngest-ever president-elect. After the electoral authority declared him the victor and his rival Luisa Gonzalez conceded defeat, Noboa vowed to restore peace to a country ravaged by a bloody drug gang war. He promised that tomorrow we begin work to rebuild a country that has been severely hit by violence, corruption and hatred. Ecuador has seen violence explode in recent years as enemy gangs with links to Mexican and Colombian cartels fight for control. The fighting has seen at least 460 inmates massacred in prisons since February 2021 many beheaded or burned alive in mass riots. The bloodbath has spilled into the streets, with gangs dangling headless corpses from city bridges and detonating car bombs outside police stations in a show of force. In August, the violence claimed the life of anti-graft and anti-cartel presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio, mowed down in a barrage of submachine-gun fire after a campaign speech. A state of emergency was declared after former journalist Villavicencios assassination, and Noboa and Gonzalez both campaigned, and voted, in bullet-proof vests and with heavy security details.  On Sunday, Noboa told supporters in his home town of Olon in the southwest his goal was to restore peace to bring back education to the youth and create jobs. Ecuadorans voted Sunday with no reports of violence, watched over by some 100,000 police and soldiers. May we elect the best president because (he or she) will govern a country that is destroyed to address all these problems such as insecurity, Indigenous voter Ramiro Duchitanga told AFP in Cuenca in Ecuadors south. It is a critical election, added Freddy Escobar, a popular 49-year-old singer in Quito, citing crime as his main worry. I am voting in fear, not knowing what will happen. The main concerns of Ecuadorans, according to opinion polls, are crime and violence in a country where the murder rate quadrupled in the four years to 2022. Opinion polls list unemployment as voters second concern. Noboa, who obtained some 52 percent of the vote according to a near-complete count, was elected to only 16 months in office to complete the term of incumbent Guillermo Lasso, who called a snap vote to avoid possible impeachment for alleged embezzlement. Under the law, Noboa can run again for the 2025-29 presidential term, and the one after that. Noboa is the son of one of Ecuadors richest men, who himself has five failed presidential bids to his name. The president-elect, whose only political experience is two years as a lawmaker, calls himself center-left but embraces neoliberal economic thinking. He ran on the ticket of the brand-new National Democratic Action alliance, which incorporates parties from the center and left of the political spectrum. Noboa reiterated Sunday that he intends to give progress to a country that has all the elements to be a global example. Gonzalez was the handpicked candidate of socialist ex-president Rafael Correa, who governed from 2007 to 2017 and lives in exile in Belgium to avoid serving an eight-year prison term for graft another major concern in the country. From eight candidates, Gonzalez took the most votes in the first round in August with 34 percent, followed by Noboa with 23 percent. On Sunday, she offered her profound congratulations to Noboa, Because this is democracy. Addressing supporters in Quito, Gonzales also said she would not be claiming fraud.The post Ecuador elects youngest ever President to rebuild ‘destroyed’ country appeared first on Linda Ikeji Blog.

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