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The World

February 01, 1988

Social Democrat Rodrigo Borja, who has vowed to shift Ecuador to the left, took the lead as voters went to the polls to choose a successor to retiring President Leon Febres Cordero, a strong U.S. ally. However, in a field of 10 candidates, he was far short of avoiding a runoff election in May. With more than one million ballots counted, Borja, 52, had 278,020 votes, or 20.3%. Among the other presidential candidates is retired air force Gen. Frank Vargas Pazzos, who was imprisoned for leading uprisings against Febres Cordero in 1986. More than 4.6 million registered voters also were electing a new, 71-seat unicameral Congress and selecting nearly 1,400 local officials.

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