Costa Rica Heads to a Runoff between Figueres and Chaves

Rodrigo Chaves (l) y Jose Maria Figueres (r) will compete in a runoff on April 3rd.  Photo: Getty Images

With 87.7% of the votes counted, Figueres has 27.3% of the votes, while Chaves has 16.7%.  There were 23 other candidates for president.

By Confidencial

HAVANA TIMES – Costa Rica will need a runoff vote on April 3 after a close first round this Sunday won by former president José María Figueres, followed by economist Rodrigo Chaves, who became the big surprise of these elections.

With 87.7% of the tables counted, Figueres, former president between 1994 and 1998, obtains 27.3% of the votes, while Chaves has 16.7%. The evangelical preacher Fabricio Alvarado adds 14.8%, according to the results of the country’s  Electoral authority (TSE).

A total of 59.3 percent of the registered voters cast their ballots. The 40.7% abstention would be the highest in the country’s history.

The TSE will make its next report on Monday afternoon and the final preliminary results are expected on Tuesday, followed days later by the official declaration.  

What is certain is that there will be a second round on April 3, since none of the candidates reached the 40% necessary to succeed in the first round of voting on Sunday.

For the third consecutive election, Costa Rica will need a runoff to decide on the president.

The voting tables in the Costa Rican elections closed this Sunday after a 12-hour day in which the authorities reported order, no serious irregularities, and a good influx of people.

In Sunday’s elections, in which a record number of 25 candidates ran for president, 3.5 million people were called to vote to elect the president and the 57 deputies that make up the Legislative Assembly for the period 2022-2026.

The OAS Electoral Observer Mission highlighted that during the day there was order and confidence among the voters in the country’s electoral process and that by mid-day they had received no reports of irregularities.

Election day passed calmly and with the typical atmosphere of elections in this country, without situations of violence. The TSE reported that all voting tables opened without problems, including the 80 that were placed in consulates of 42 countries so Costa Ricans abroad could participate.

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