The National Electoral Council (CNE) made it official for the second time: Lenin Moreno has defeated challenger Guillermo Lasso and will succeed President Rafael Correa.
The announcement came after a marathon 13-hour recount of more than 1.2 million votes on a coliseum floor in Quito. The recount, in fact, padded Moreno’s lead by almost 2,000 votes, boosting his winning margin to 51.16% of the vote total from 51.15% over Lasso’s 48.84%.
Lasso remains defiant, however, in calling the election a fraud and insisting of a recount of all votes. Outside the Rumiñahui Coliseum, several hundred of his supporters waved banners and chanted anti-government slogans during and after the recount.
“This process has verified that the election results were reliable and that discrepancies in the final count were minor,” said CNE President Juan Pablo Pozo. “The integrity of our election has been confirmed and the will of the people has been respected.”
The only differences from the official election night results occurred in three provinces, Santo Domingo, Napo, and Cotopaxi, the CRC said. In all, Moreno gained 1,594 votes while Lasso lost 439.
The 1.2 million votes recounted, or 11.2% of the total, came from voting stations where the Lasso and Moreno campaigns claimed they witnessed irregularities during the April 2 election.