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News > Guatemala

Guatemala Update: Candidate Mulet Accuses the Ruling Party

  • Presidential candidate Edmond Mulet, Guatemala, June 25, 2023.

    Presidential candidate Edmond Mulet, Guatemala, June 25, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/ @ClarOscuroNews

Published 25 June 2023 (8 hours 4 minutes ago)

Nineteen politicians compete to reach the Presidency. Among them, Sandra Torres, Edmond Mulet, and Zuri Rios, lead the latest voting intention polls.

On Sunday, around 9.3 million Guatemalans will elect a president, vice president, 160 legislators, 20 legislators for the Central American Parliament, and 340 municipal authorities. Nineteen politicians compete to reach the Presidency.


Guatemalan General Elections Kick Off

Among them, former First Lady Sandra Torres, former United Nations official Edmond Mulet, and Zuri Rios, the daughter of former dictator Efrain Rios-Montt, lead the latest voting intention polls. Below are the major events as they occur.

12:30 pm: Candidate Edmond Mulet also denounces irregularities. "There are worrying reports that the ruling party is using the coercion of money and power" to get votes, Mulet told reporters at the polling station where he cast his ballot.

"Hopefully everything goes well. Right now, we cannot speculate. Let's hope that everything happens as normal and that there is no 'hairy hand'. These elections are key opportunities to put a stop to corruption," stressed the 72-year-old former diplomat, who is sponsored by the right-wing party Cabal and ranks second in Guatemalans' voting intention.

10h00: Candidate Torres denounces anomalies in the elections. "We have had information that the government party is giving away food and there are power cuts. We are concerned about anomalies," presidential candidate Sandra Torres told reporters after casting her vote at the Valle Verde School in Guatemala City.

Nevertheless, the candidate of the National Unity of Hope (UNE) party hopes to reach the second round of elections since the latest voting intention polls give her a 21.3 percent of popular acceptance.

09h00: Dictator Efrain Rios Montt’s daughter casts her vote. "Let's go out to the voting centers. It is important to exercise our democracy," said the far-right presidential candidate Zury Rios after casting her vote in Guatemala City.

This 55-year-old woman is participating in the current electoral process even though the authorities vetoed her candidacy in 2019 because the Guatemalan Constitution prohibits relatives of dictators from ruling the country.

However, the Constitutional Court endorsed her registration as her candidate. According to the latest voting intention survey, Rios has a 9.1 percent of citizen support.

Human rights defenders have strongly rejected Rios because her father was sentenced in 2013 for the genocide committed against 1,600 Indigenous people in 1982, although that ruling was annulled. 10 days later.

07:30: Violence forces suspension of the electoral process in the Municipality of San Jose del Golfo. The authorities confirmed that the elections were suspended in San Jose because 130 members of the polling stations submitted their resignation.

This happened after they were verbally and physically attacked on Saturday night when they were going to one last training to perform their duties.

On the outskirts of the municipality, unknown persons intercepted the buses that transported the polling station members. After forcing them off the buses, the attackers doused them with gasoline and threatened to set them on fire.

"San Jose's four voting centers do not have volunteers to open their doors," the Guatemala Departmental Electoral Board (JEDG) said, asking citizens to wait for the Supreme Electoral Tribunal's decision on the measures to be taken in response to "this possible sabotage."

The tweet reads, "Zury Rios cast his vote at the National Central School of Commercial Sciences, in zone 1."

07:00: Good turnout of voters at the beginning of electoral day. The Supreme Electoral Tribunal formally began the electoral day at 7:00 local time. The influx of voters was significant from early hours in most parts of the country.

Hundreds of Indigenous citizens, for example, began lining up to cast their ballots in the town of San Mateo Ixtatan, in the department of Huehuetenango.

At the voting table, each voter receives five ballots of different colors to secretly mark your vote for president and vice president, mayor, national legislators, regional legislators, and representatives to the Central American Parliament.

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