President and one-time Sandinista revolutionary Daniel Ortega is headed for a mandate to stay in office in Nicaragua, overcoming a constitutional limit on re-election and reports of voting problems. Ortega had 64 percent of the votes in a count early Monday, compared with 29 percent for his nearest challenger, Fabio Gadea. Conservative Arnoldo Aleman, a former president, was a distant third with 6 percent after national elections on Sunday.
Only 16 percent of the votes have been counted, but electoral council President Roberto Rivas said a quick count representative of the entire vote gave Ortega a large advantage as well. The methodology of the quick count was not released.
International election observers reported problems with access to voting stations. One national group of observers, Let’s Have Democracy, said it recorded 600 complaints of voting irregularities, a handful of injuries in protests and 30 arrests.