Nicaragua’s Presidential Election

November 8, 2021

nicaraguas presidential election

For Nicaragua’s Presidential Election Daniel Ortega is set to win reelection as Nicaragua’s democracy faces uncertain future

President Daniel Ortega is set to win re-election in Nicaragua amid deep concern from the international community. This will be the fourth consecutive term for the 75-year-old politician.

Ortega and wife hold a powerful firm grip on power

Nicaragua’s Presidential Election

Competing narratives are hovering over Sunday’s general elections and their meaning for the country. According to reports, the turnout was historically low.

However, Ortega’s allies say that it was pretty solid at 65.34%. The same sources claim that the controversial leader has received 74.99% of the votes.

The results are not yet final; the official numbers will be revealed on November 26. However, there is no doubt about the identity of the big winner.

Ortega is going to lead the country for the next five years. He forms a unique team with his wife, Rosario Murillo, 70, who is vice president and the chief spokesperson for the Nicaraguan government.

Ortega squashes the opposition

Nicaragua’s Presidential Election

The leaders of the opposition had asked voters to stay home and not participate in what they call a sham. In June, seven political figures, who looked like credible challengers to the current regime, were arrested.

Almost five months later, those people are still in prison and have been more or less accused of treason. More opponents were arrested before the elections.

Nicaragua’s Center for Human Rights revealed that at least 20 people were arrested on Saturday night. Nicaragua’s situation has been more complicated in the last three years.

In 2018, Ortega faced massive protests after his government tried to make changes to social security programs in order to slow down the deficit. The president did not try to appease the protesters who wanted him to leave power.

The crackdown on Ortega’s critics gained a lot of steam at the time and has not stopped since then. Hundreds of protesters were detained.

The 2018 government protests led to at least 322 deaths, and thousands of people were injured. This development was worrisome for the international community, and many experts started to describe the country’s democracy as fragile.

Costa Rica and U.S. blast undemocratic elections

Nicaragua’s Presidential Election

President Joe Biden slammed Sunday’s elections as not fair and undemocratic. The Biden administration is urging Ortega to take immediate steps to strengthen democracy in his country.

Costa Rica, a place that many Nicaraguan exiles have called home in recent years, has adopted a similar language. The neighboring country wants political prisoners to be released.

The American leadership is partnering with international organizations to support the Nicaraguan people and track Ortega’s abuses. In recent years, Europe and America have imposed sanctions on Ortega and his allies.

This policy has been a failure because the authoritarian has grown more belligerent. The U.S. Congress has even given Biden more latitude to act on the matter. However, it is unclear if these moves will change anything.

Ortega calls foreign critics “demons”

Nicaragua’s Presidential Election

Ortega went on state television on Sunday and blasted his foreign critics as “demons” trying to destabilize Nicaragua. He has also accused them of being responsible for the violence.

The leader of the socialist party Sandinista National Liberation Front first became president in 1984, but he lost power in 1990. In 2007, Ortega marked his big return to the presidency.

For the Nicaraguan president, the latest elections were a real success. His allies even said that observers from 27 countries were able to form their own opinion on the situation in Nicaragua.

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