Recount of 1.2 million presidential election votes begins this morning in Quito

Apr 18, 2017 | 0 comments

A recount of 1.2 million votes from the April 2 presidential election begins Tuesday morning at 8:30 in the Rumiñahui Coliseum in Quito.

Counting tables on the coliseum floor in Quito. (El Comercio)

The votes to be recounted represent 11.2% of all votes cast in the election and come from 3,865 voting stations in 24 provinces, plus overseas stations in Europe and the U.S. The National Electoral Council (CNE) said it expects the counting to take eight to 12 hours, with 500 counters working at 250 tables.

The polling stations to be recounted were cited by the campaigns of Guillermo Lasso and Lenin Moreno for alleged irregularities on election day. Poll watchers from Lasso’s Creo party listed 3,442 voting stations in its complaint while Moreno’s Alianza País named 536. Many of the stations were cited by both campaigns.

According to recount rules established by CRE, a representative of both Creo and Alianza País will be allowed to observe vote counting at each table. As of Monday night, it was unclear whether Creo would send representatives since it has insisted, since Moreno was declared the winner, on a recount of all votes cast.

On Monday, the Tribunal Contencioso Electoral rejected Creo’s claim for a total recount. In his petition, Creo attorney Carlos Padrón argued that the 3,442 voting stations it listed was only a sampling of problems it observed during the election. The tribunal said the partial recount would determine if this is the case and if further recounting is necessary.

After the tribunal decision, Padrón said Creo said it was not dropping its demand.

The Army, which delivered the ballots from around the country, is in charge of providing security inside and outside the coliseum during the recount.

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