Ruling party presidential candidate claims victory in Dominican Republic
The presidential candidate of the Dominican Republic`s ruling party, Danilo Medina, claimed victory Monday after securing slightly more than 50 percent of the votes in Sunday`s elections, according to Xinhua.
"Today, thanks to the sovereign decision of the Dominican people, I am president of all Dominicans," Medina announced via Twitter.
With 98.87 percent of the votes counted, the candidate of the ruling Dominican Liberation Party (PLD) declared a win with 51.24 percent of the votes.
His main rival, former president Hipolito Mejia (2000-2004) of the opposition Dominican Revolutionary Party (PRD), was reported to have garnered 46.93 percent of the votes. He has not conceded defeat.
The Dominican Republic`s national electoral commission (JCE) announced the official election results early Monday, saying 2,302, 746 people voted for Medina and 2,109,123 people voted for Mejia. About 6.1 million of the country`s 10 million inhabitants were eligible to vote.
While initial tallies late Sunday showed the ruling party candidate leading in the votes, Medina said then he would wait until the electoral commission made its official announcement before claiming victory.
"We will celebrate in a big way tomorrow," Medina told supporters Sunday, speaking from his party`s headquarters.
As the JCE issued successive tally updates Sunday in favor of Medina, the opposition`s Mejia said, "we have regressed to the era of autocratic governments."
Meanwhile, on Monday, the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Jose Miguel Insulza, congratulated Medina for his win in Sunday`s elections.
The OAS praised the people`s "massive participation" in the electoral process, while conceding there had been some voting irregularities.
"Beyond several isolated incidents that did not affect the normal progress of the elections," Dominicans displayed their democratic maturity by exercising their right to vote and patiently awaiting the results, the head of the OAS electoral observer commission and former Uruguayan President Tabare Vasquez told reporters here.