UPDATED 6:47 AM PT — Mon. July 9, 2018
Nicaragua’s president is refusing to move up elections despite weeks of unrest.
In a rally Saturday in the capital of Managua, Daniel Ortega insisted his opposition is trying to stage a coup, and referred to them as gangs, vandals and criminals.
Several religious and political leaders have called on him to move elections from 2022 to 2019 in response to recent violent protests, which left more than 200 people dead.
However, Ortega said he must follow the constitution and can not change the election date.
“They’ll need to seek the vote of the people, let’s see if the people will vote for the coup-mongers who have caused so much destruction these days,” stated the Nicaraguan president. ” There’s still time — as mandated by law — there’s still time before the election.”
Ortega has ruled since 2007, and is looking to retain power despite accusations he’s becoming a dictator.