This Sunday at 7:00 a.m. (2:00 p.m. Spanish peninsula time) the polling stations are open for the election of the next President of Nicaragua and the renewal of the National Assembly, the Nicaraguan unicameral parliament.
Voting is open until 6:00 p.m. (1:00 p.m. in mainland Spain) and the current president, Daniel Ortega, is the favorite for a new five-year term despite opposition complaints about irregularities.
About 4.5 million Nicaraguans are called in a process regulated by the Supreme Electoral Council (CSE), in which about 280,000 people work, including 30,000 electoral police officers.
In addition to the President and Vice-President, the 92 members of the National Assembly and 20 members of the Central American Parliament (Parlacen) are elected.
According to the law, candidacies for president and vice president must be mixed and the six parties that nominate candidates have nominated a man for president and a woman for vice president.
The favorite is Daniel Ortega, a candidate for the United Nicaragua Triumph Alliance, led by the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) and made up of eight other small political parties.
The Liberal Constitutionalist Party (right), the second most elected force in the two previous parliamentary elections, has MP Walter Espinoza as its presidential candidate. Guillermo Osorno (Christian Way), Alfredo Montiel (Liberal Alliance of Nicaragua), Gerson Gutiérrez Gasparín (Alliance for the Republic Party) and Mauricio Orue (Independent Liberal Party) complete the presidential elections.
Activists have denounced a wave of arbitrary arrests against voices critical of Ortega, including seven presidential candidates as well as journalists, defense lawyers, student leaders and farmers.
Ortega, in power since 2007, and his vice-president, wife and right-hand man, Rosario Murillo, are trying to surpass 72 percent of the votes they garnered in the last election in 2016, which are also embroiled in controversy and allegations.