Paraguayan voters appear to be ready to end 61 years of right-wing rule in the Latin American country in a national election this Sunday.
Fernando Lugo, a former bishop and head of the Patriotic Alliance for Change, is leading in the polls against the incumbent Colorado Party, which has ruled Paraguay without interruption since 1947.
VOICE OF ZAA NKWETA, PRESENTER: Another Latin American domino could fall to the left, as Paraguay prepares for presidential elections on Sunday. The left-wing, former Catholic Bishop and main opposition candidate Fernando Lugo is leading in the polls and could oust the ruling right-wing Colorado party that has ruled without interruption since 1947. Lugo left the Catholic Church when he decided to run for president a year ago. The Catholic Church has suspended him from his charges, but has not dismissed him. Lugo is the main opposition candidate from a coalition of eight parties and a dozen social organizations, called APC or Patriotic Alliance for Change.
FERNANDO LUGO, PARAGUAYAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (SUBTITLED TRANSLATION): I believe that the inequality in the distribution of land in Paraguay is scandalous. Many don’t know that.
NKWETA: One of the reasons for Lugo’s good showing in the polls is due to the split in the Colorado party between its candidate Blanca Ovelar and former general Lino César Oviero, running on his own right-wing ticket. Oviero had been jailed for an attempted coup. Ovelar, the candidate supported by current president Nicanor Duarte, closed her campaign in a massive rally in the city center of Asunción. About three million Paraguayan voters are expected to elect a new president on Sunday, April 20.
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