The head of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Honduras David Matamoros Batson has said that the country's political parties have been informed of the winner of Sunday's election, but that it is waiting for the complete ballot count before making an official announcement.
Matamoros Batson confirmed that each political party has a copy of the ballots, but refused to speculate on the results.
The TSE head assured that the body will respect the popular will but added that it wanted "people to understand that we are counting the ballots ... but as long as we do not have 100 percent of the ballots (counted), we can not give the results."
Meanwhile, the European Union Parliament Electoral Observation Mission in Honduras has announced its preliminary report of the country’s elections.
Mission leaders in Honduras, Marisa Matias and Jose Ignacio Faria said that of the elections, voters could cast their ballots in a “calm” and “transparent” environment that “conforms to a democracy.” Faria mentioned that there were some voting stations that operated slower than others causing minor, “avoidable confusions” but that overall, the country’s electoral process went smoothly.
More troubling to the EU electoral mission observers was the runup to Sunday’s election, and the post-election ballot counting.
Matias requested that the Supreme Electoral Tribunal release election numbers in real time, as they are counted.
During the press conference, Faria said that candidates need to respect the national Supreme Tribunal of Elections, TSE, count of ballots. Since Sunday, Salvador Nasralla of the Opposition Alliance and incumbent Juan Orlando Hernandez have proclaimed themselves the winner, with 58 percent of the ballots are counted.
Ramiro Lobo, a substitute judge on Honduras' Supreme Electoral Tribunal, stated Monday that the "tendency" of electoral results favoring Nasralla's presidential victory is "irreversible."
Matias noted that organized crime members committed grave human rights violations against social activists and politicians during the run-up to the election. Most notably, three political party members were killed within 24 hours just four days prior to the election.
In addition, Matias said the relationship between TSE and the ruling National Party needed to be “depoliticized.”
Other independent international electoral observers noted irregularities during Sunday’s vote. Kevin Ramos, an observer for the Association of Human Rights and Democracy, told teleSUR correspondent Heather Gies that the ballots at polling stations nationwide did not clearly indicate small party candidate names, so that voters couldn’t tell for whom they were voting.
He added that some poll workers were not stamping voter signatures on ballots, a requirement during Honduran elections.