Chicago, July 4, 2023 — One week before the general elections in Guatemala, the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) complied with the ruling of the Constitutional Court (CC) that demanded to stop making the results of the first round of elections official. In this phase, Sandra Torres, candidate of the Unidad Nacional de la Esperanza (UNE) party, obtained first place, followed by Bernardo Arévalo, of Movimiento Semilla. The CC granted a provisional injunction on Saturday, July 1, filed by a group of nine political parties, in which it ordered the TSE to stop the officialization of the results of the elections from June 25 and to carry out a series of procedures for the verification of the minutes.
In view of the worrisome situation, Alianza Americas, a multi-ethnic and multicultural network of 57 civil society organizations led by Latin American and Caribbean immigrants living in the United States of America, expresses the following statement in defense of transparency and democracy in the Guatemalan electoral process:
The results of the first round of elections are marked by abstention and invalid votes. The defeated political parties went to the courts, despite the electoral procedures established to verify and challenge the votes. Respect for the exercise of the right to vote and following electoral procedures is fundamental for democracy. This legal maneuver generates uncertainty and new questions about the role of the administration of justice in Guatemala.
We urge the institutions to guarantee the rule of law and to respect the Constitution and compliance with the law. All necessary actions must be taken to protect the integrity of the electoral process and ensure the validity of the results that express the will of the people.
We also demand that political parties and actors involved in the electoral process act responsibly and respect democratic principles, fostering a climate of dialogue and collaboration. Political polarization and confrontation only exacerbates citizens’ trust in democratic institutions.
In this context, we call on Guatemalan citizens to stay informed, participate actively, and exercise their right to vote responsibly. Democracy is strengthened by citizen participation and civic engagement. Guatemalan citizens must know their role in constructing a just and equitable society.
Finally, we reaffirm our commitment to democratic principles, transparency as well as electoral justice. We urge the Guatemalan community abroad as well as other international organizations to closely follow the situation in Guatemala and to provide the necessary support to ensure transparency and respect for the will of the people. We will remain vigilant, informing and accompanying the Guatemalan diaspora.
Alianza Americas is the premier transnational advocacy network of Latin American migrant-led organizations working in the United States, across the Americas, and globally to create an inclusive, equitable and sustainable way of life for communities across North, Central and South America.