Nayib Bukele declares victory in Salvadoran election

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By Marco Echevarria

Without a ruling by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) of El Salvador and with only 31.49 percent of minutes prosecuted, Nayib Bukele proclaimed himself Sunday as the winner of the elections, stating that he has obtained more than 85 percent of the vote.

This is how he awaits the official results of the TSE, Nayib Bukele celebrated his alleged electoral triumph, in a commissioning process characterized by the low participation, the advantage of the ruling party and the allegations of irregularities.

According to the preliminary results, the current president, of the New Ideas party, obtained the majority of the votes (1,295.888), while his rivals of the Frente Farabundo Martí para la Liberación Nacional (FMLN) and the Nationalist Republican Alliance (Arena), Manuel Flores and Joel Sánchez obtained 110,244 and 96,700 votes, respectively.

Presidential and legislative elections were held within the framework of a state of exemption, allegations of human rights violations and questions about how immediate re-election was passed.

Complaints of irregularities

Throughout the election day, the opposition parties of El Salvador denounced a series of irregularities committed by President Nayib Bukele’s party.

Before the beginning of the FMLN’s election and candidate, Manuel Flores, denounced the abuse of power and the complicity of the TSE.

The Salvadoran opposition leader said that acts of coercion and threats of dismissal have been carried out against public officials who do not vote for the re-election candidate.

For Manuel Flores, such actions are part of the abuse of power by the Nayib Bukele government.

After Nayib Bukele’s self-proclaimation as re-elected president, Manuel Flores pointed out that from his party they have complied with electoral laws.

The FMLN candidate said it is not easy to face an election with a full state turned to a party.

He also reported that election officials ignored several irregularities committed by Nayib Bukele’s New Ideas party during the campaign.

Manuel Flores pointed out that against all forecasts the FMLN became the second political force in the country.

From the Arena party they denounced irregularities in the vote, claiming that the presidential reelection candidate violated electoral silence repeatedly in a system that favors and protects him.

The leadership of the right-wing party accused the TSE of complicity in allowing representatives of the ruling party to act with total impunity in polling stations both nationally and internationally.

They also warned of the replacement of adequately trained staff by others who do not have the proper training and credentials required by the TSE.

In another incident in the framework of the presidential elections, Salvadoran-Canadian writer Carlos Bucio Borja was arrested by police officers when he read aloud the articles of the Constitution of the Republic prohibiting presidential re-election.

Carlos Bucio Borja was arrested at the Concha Viuda de Escalón voting center, in the colony of the same name.

The writer and poet was surrounded by PNC agents who demanded that he withdraw from the polling station, before which those present began to protest against the police and remind them that there is free expression.

“I am being violated in article 6 (of the Constitution),” the citizen shouted, when the police came up to him and took him by force for telling him to President Nayib Bukele.

TSE Pronunciation

In offering the first balance of the election day, the president of the TSE, Dora Esmeralda Martínez, reported on some incidents related to the opening and closing of polling stations both nationally and abroad.

The head of the TSE pointed out that due to problems with tenants and owners of polling stations abroad, some had to be closed despite having people who had not yet voted.

Faced with this fact, Dora Esmeralda Martínez indicated that as an electoral body they will take the appropriate measures to ensure that all those affected by the incident could vote as soon as possible.

Most of the polling stations installed for the presidential and legislative elections held this Sunday closed at 17h00 this Sunday (23H00 UTC), giving way to the start of the counting of elections in which Bukele is running for re-election, despite the fact that the Constitution does not allow it.

Bukele’s path to unconstitutional re-election opened in 2021, when the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, which had been appointed by Congress with an official majority without following the legal procedure, changed a criterion of interpretation of the Constitution.

Throughout the campaign, Nayib Bukele called on Salvadorans to vote to continue the “war on gangs,” with the implementation of the emergency regime that, according to humanitarian organizations, violates rights.

The emergency regime has left more than 6,000 complaints of abuse, including arbitrary detentions and torture, in addition to some 220 deaths of detainees, according to humanitarian organizations.

Words of Bukele

The opposition in El Salvador has been “pulverized,” Nayib Bukele declared after proclaiming himself the winner of the presidential elections held in the Central American country in clear violation of the powers of the TSE, which has not yet formalized the results.

This article has been translated from the original which first appeared in TelesurTV