Porfirio Lobo Wins Honduras’ Presidential Elections

Conservative opposition candidate Porfirio Lobo has registered comfortable victory in Honduras’ presidential election.

A rich landowner, Lobo got more than 55 per cent support by the time half of the votes were counted and his closest rival, Elvin Santos of the ruling Liberal Party, conceded defeat.

Following coup which dethroned leftist President Manuel Zelaya in June forcing him to exile, the election could now quite down the five-month crisis.

However, despite US praising the elections, leftist rulers of Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela and other Latin American countries have termed the elections as invalid, for it was supported by coup leaders and could end any hope of Zelaya’s return to power.

Immediately after announcement of partial results of elections, which was delayed due to some technical problems, hundreds of supporters of Lobo’s National  Party started waving flags and dancing in a victory celebration at a hotel in the capital.

“Today Honduras has decided its own future to end once and for all the crisis that has affected us and damaged the most needy,” Mr Lobo, 61, said in a victory speech.

But Zelaya said that the election was illegitimate and that the election winner would not be a true president.

“He is going to be a very weak leader without recognition from the people and most countries,” Zelaya was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Lobo promised to end Honduras’ isolation from countries like Brazil and international organizations such as the Organization of American States, or OAS, which have frozen Honduras out in retaliation for the coup.

But Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva again condemned the election, saying that failure to oppose it could encourage other ‘adventurers’ to stage coups in Latin America.

“If the countries that can … make gestures do not do so, we do not know where else there could be a coup,” Lula said in Portgual on Sunday.

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