Former Catholic clergyman inflicts crushing victory on ruling right wing party in power since 1947


Story Transcript

VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER:
A former Roman Catholic bishop has inflicted a crushing victory over Paraguay’s six-decade ruling right wing party in a presidential vote.

FERNANDO LUGO, PRESIDENT ELECT:
“Today we can affirm that the little ones can also win.”

VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER:
The historic triumph by 56-year-old Fernando Lugo, dubbed the “bishop of the poor,” shattered the 61-year grip on national power by the Colorado Party.

Colorado candidate Blanca Ovelar conceded defeat five hours after polls closed.

BLANCA OVELAR, LOSING PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:
“The result is irreversible and we recognise the triumph of Fernando Lugo. We salute the candidate of the Alliance for his triumph.

VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER:
News of the win by Lugo set off massive parties in cities across Paraguay with horn-honking caravans of cars.

Eight months ago, Lugo welded leftist unions, Indigenous peoples and poor farmers into a coalition to form the Patriotic Alliance for Change.
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Fuelling his election is the 13 percent joblessness and a poverty rate that includes 43 percent of Paraguays 6.5 million inhabitants, many of whom survive on one meal a day.

FERNANDO LUGO, PRESIDENT ELECT:
“We have taken a step showing maturity in the construction and consolidation of this Paraguayan democracy that we need so much.”

VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER:
A bishop since 1994, he resigned the post in December 2006 to sidestep Paraguay’s constitutional ban on clergy seeking office.

Lugo says he was influenced by the liberation theology frowned upon by former pope John Paul II and current pope Benedict XVI.


Story Transcript

VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER: A former Roman Catholic bishop has inflicted a crushing victory over Paraguay’s six-decade ruling right wing party in a presidential vote. FERNANDO LUGO, PRESIDENT ELECT: "Today we can affirm that the little ones can also win." VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER: The historic triumph by 56-year-old Fernando Lugo, dubbed the "bishop of the poor," shattered the 61-year grip on national power by the Colorado Party. Colorado candidate Blanca Ovelar conceded defeat five hours after polls closed. BLANCA OVELAR, LOSING PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: "The result is irreversible and we recognise the triumph of Fernando Lugo. We salute the candidate of the Alliance for his triumph. VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER: News of the win by Lugo set off massive parties in cities across Paraguay with horn-honking caravans of cars. Eight months ago, Lugo welded leftist unions, Indigenous peoples and poor farmers into a coalition to form the Patriotic Alliance for Change. . Fuelling his election is the 13 percent joblessness and a poverty rate that includes 43 percent of Paraguays 6.5 million inhabitants, many of whom survive on one meal a day. FERNANDO LUGO, PRESIDENT ELECT: “We have taken a step showing maturity in the construction and consolidation of this Paraguayan democracy that we need so much." VOICE OF CARLO BASILONE, PRODUCER: A bishop since 1994, he resigned the post in December 2006 to sidestep Paraguay’s constitutional ban on clergy seeking office. Lugo says he was influenced by the liberation theology frowned upon by former pope John Paul II and current pope Benedict XVI.