SYDNEY – Ecuadorians living in Australia cast their votes on Sunday for the South American country’s general elections at polling stations set up in Sydney and Canberra.
“The polling stations were set up without any problems at 7 am and Ecuadorian families, those living in Sydney and students registered to vote, began arriving,” Daniela Garcia, head of economic and consular affairs at the Ecuadorian Embassy in Australia, told EFE.
Garcia said around 336 Ecuadorians are eligible to vote in Sydney and another 59 in Canberra.
At the town hall in central Sydney’s Redfern neighborhood, voters lined up smoothly, according to Sergio Garay, the first to cast his vote, Edith Ojeda and Nelson Ramirez.
The process is carried out with complete transparency, added Garay, who has been living in Australia for 20 years.
“I feel proud (to vote) for my country, I love my country a lot,” said Ojeda, an Ecuadorian who has been residing in Sydney for 40 years, while Ramirez said he was happy to have cast his vote.
Over 12 million Ecuadorians are eligible to vote this Sunday to elect the country’s new president, 137 members of the National Assembly and five Andean parliamentarians.
Ecuadorians are also voting in a referendum about a government initiative that seeks to prohibit public servants from having money or assets in tax havens.