Early results did not quite give him the 40 percent of votes and 10 percentage point lead required to avoid a run-off with his closest rival, conservative Guillermo Lasso. The ex-banker predicted a second round in April.
Should this happen, analysts expect Ecuador’s fractured opposition to gather around Lasso, who has campaigned on a pledge to revive the economy.
Voting is mandatory in Ecuador, and 12 million people are expected to have cast their ballot. Many declared themselves undecided.
An economic downturn and corruption scandals have cast a shadow on the decade-long left-wing rule of Rafael Correa.
The outgoing president brought stability to Ecuador but he’s also upset many with his confrontational style,and some speculate the country will follow Peru, Brazil and Argentina in electing a more conservative government. (Euronews)