Election Watch

Issue Date July 1994
Volume 5
Issue 3
Page Numbers 129-132
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ELECTION RESULTS (March 1994-June 1994)

Belarus: A presidential election was scheduled to take place on June 23, and results will be reported in our next issue.

Colombia: A first-round presidential election held on May 29 ended in a virtual tie between Liberal Party candidate Ernesto Samper Pizano and Conservative Party candidate Andrés Pastrana Arango, with less than one-half of one percent separating the two contenders. Antonio Navarro Wolff, the candidate of the Alianza Democrática M-19, trailed with less than 5 percent of the vote—a sharp decline from the 13 percent he won in the 1990 presidential elections. Since no candidate won a majority, a second-round vote is scheduled to take place on June 19, and results will be reported in our next issue. Only 30 percent of the electorate turned out for legislative elections on March 13, giving the Liberal Party 89 of 163 seats in the House of Representatives and 52 of 102 seats in the Senate. The Conservative Party trailed with 56 seats in the lower house and 21 in the Senate. These elections also dealt a serious blow to the Alianza Democrática M-19, which secured only 2 seats in the lower house and lost 8 of its 9 seats in the senate.

Dominican Republic: In a presidential election on May 16 tainted by irregularities and accusations of fraud, preliminary results showed President Joaquín Balaguer maintaining a slim lead with 42 percent of the vote to defeat challenger José Francisco Peña Gómez, who secured 41 percent. Former president and longtime Balaguer rival Juan Bosch trailed with 13 percent. Because the opposition is contesting these figures, the Central Electoral Board will reveal all of its records from the vote-tallying process before declaring official results. Legislative elections were also held on May 16, and results will be reported in our next issue. [End Page 129]

Ecuador: Preliminary results from legislative elections held on May 1 to fill 65 of the 77 seats in the National Congress showed the center-right Social Christian Party finishing with 22 seats, followed by the populist Ecuadorian Roldosist Party (PRE) with 10 seats. The center-right Conservative Party, the leftist Popular Democratic Movement (MPD), and the center-left Democratic Left each secured 7 seats. The remaining 12 seats were distributed among eight parties, including the Popular Democratic Party (3), the leftist Ecuadorian Revolutionary Popular Alliance (2), and the centrist and populist Alfarist Radical Front (2).

El Salvador: Armando Calderón Sol of the ruling Republican Nationalist Alliance (ARENA), who barely failed to win an absolute majority in a first-round presidential election on March 20, won a runoff election on April 24 with 68 percent of the vote. Rubén Zamora, the candidate representing a three-party coalition that included former Marxist guerrillas of the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), finished with 32 percent. ARENA also dominated legislative elections held on March 20, taking 39 seats in the 84-member National Assembly. The FMLN secured 21 seats, followed by the centrist Christian Democratic Party and the National Conciliation Party, which secured 18 and 4 seats, respectively. These were the first peacetime elections in 64 years.

Hungary: The Hungarian Socialist Party—the successor to the former Communist Party—emerged victorious in two rounds of parliamentary elections on May 8 and 30, winning 209 of the 386 contested seats. The liberal Alliance of Free Democrats was the closest runner-up with 70 seats, followed by the former ruling Hungarian Democratic Forum with 37 seats. Gyula Horn, the current Socialist leader and the last Communist foreign minister, has been named prime minister of the new government, although the Socialists have secured a parliamentary majority, they have decided to enter negotiations on forming a coalition government with the Alliance of Free Democrats.

Malawi: On May 17, voters went to the polls for the first time in 30 years and ousted Kamuzu Banda, the nation’s self-proclaimed life president and Africa’s longest-ruling dictator. Winning only slightly more than 33 percent of the vote, Banda was defeated by one of his former cabinet ministers, Bakili Muluzi, who took 47 percent. Chakufwa Chihana, a former political prisoner, finished third with 19 percent. In the parliamentary race, Muluzi’s party, the United Democratic Front, secured 84 of the 177 contested seats. Banda’s Malawi Congress Party and Chihana’s Alliance for Democracy took 55 and 36 seats, respectively, with 2 seats not yet filled.

Panama: In presidential elections on May 8, Ernesto Pérez Balladares of the Revolutionary Democratic Party (PRD), the party that had once [End Page 130] supported deposed leader General Manuel Antonio Noriega, was voted into office with 33 percent of the vote. His closest challenger was Mireya Moscoso de Gruber, widow of former president Arnulfo Arias, who had 29 percent. Rubén Blades, a well-known movie actor and salsa singer who founded the Papa Egoro (Mother Earth) party, came in third with 17 percent. Results from legislative elections, also held on May 8, will be reported in our next issue.

South Africa: On April 26-28, the African National Congress (ANC) won a landslide victory in this nation’s first nonracial parliamentary elections, taking 252 seats in the 400-member National Assembly, but just missing the two-thirds majority needed to amend the Constitution unilaterally. Former president F.W. de Klerk’s National Party came in a distant second in the parliamentary race, winning 82 seats. The Inkatha Freedom Party, led by Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi, and the white separatist Freedom Front took 43 and 9 seats, respectively. The remaining 14 seats were distributed among the Democratic Party, the Pan-Africanist Congress, and the African Christian Democratic Party. ANC leader Nelson Mandela was chosen by the new National Assembly as president of the Republic of South Africa, and former president F.W. de Klerk was selected as one of two vice presidents.

Tunisia: In parliamentary elections on March 12-19, the ruling Constitutional Democratic Rally (RCD) won more than 95 percent of the vote. Although competition was severely limited, opposition parties were guaranteed at least 19 of the 163 contested seats, making this the first multiparty parliament since independence in 1956. President Zine Abidine Ben Ali, running unopposed in presidential elections, was reelected with 99 percent of the vote.

Ukraine: In first-round parliamentary elections on March 27 and in subsequent runoff elections in districts where no party won an absolute majority, the Communist Party of Ukraine (CPU) and its left-wing allies (the Peasant Party and the Ukrainian Socialist Party) have so far secured 118 of the 450 seats in the Supreme Rada, the governing legislative body. Rukh, the main anticommunist opposition party, secured 20 seats. Other national-democratic parties, including the Ukrainian Republican Party, the Democratic Party of Ukraine, and the Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists, together won 15 seats. Centrist groups, including former prime minister Leonid Kuchma’s Interregional Reform Bloc (IRBR), the Ukrainian Democratic Renaissance Party, the Labor Party, the Social Democratic Party of Ukraine, the Civil Congress of Ukraine, and the Christian Democratic Party of Ukraine, together secured 17 seats. Extreme nationalist parties won 5 seats, and parliamentarians unaffiliated with any party took an additional 163 seats. The remaining 112 seats will be determined in [End Page 131] final runoff elections to be held on July 27, and results will be reported in our next issue. Presidential elections were scheduled to take place on June 26, and results from this vote will also be reported in our next issue.

UPCOMING ELECTIONS (July 1994-June 1995)

Belarus: parliamentary, late 1994*

Brazil: presidential/legislative, 3 October 1994

Guinea-Bissau: presidential/legislative, 3 July 1994

Liberia: presidential/legislative, 7 September 1994*

Mexico: presidential, 21 August 1994

Mozambique: presidential/parliamentary, 27-28 October 1994

Slovakia: parliamentary, 30 September 1994

Sri Lanka: parliamentary, early 1995*

Uruguay: presidential/legislative, 27 November 1994


Election Watch provides reports of recently decided and upcoming elections in developing nations and the postcommunist world. Elections in nondemocratic nations are included when they exhibit a significant element of genuine competition or, in the case of upcoming elections, when they represent an important test of progress toward democracy. Most of the data for Election Watch are provided by the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), a private, nonprofit education and research foundation that assists in monitoring, supporting, and strengthening the mechanics of the electoral process worldwide. For additional information, contact: IFES, 1620 I Street, NW, Suite 611, Washington, DC 20006; (202) 828-8507. [End Page 132]