Ramos-Horta out of Timor race

Jose Ramos-Horta
Losing power: President Jose Ramos Horta casts his vote in Dili in the third presidential elections to be held in East Timor. Picture: Getty Images Source: Getty Images
EAST Timor is heading for a run-off in its presidential election, with the Nobel Prize-winning incumbent Jose Ramos-Horta out of the race.
The preliminary results point to a second-round showdown between the opposition Fretilin party's Francisco "Lu Olo" Guterres and former guerrilla leader Taur Matan Ruak.
Mr Ramos-Horta, who shared the 1996 Nobel Peace Prize, was lagging in third place after more than 70 per cent of votes were counted, election secretariat official Luiz Fernando Valls said.
"The preliminary counting is finished," he said.
"Guterres and Ruak will go through to the second round on April 16, based on this preliminary count."
None of the 12 candidates who contested Saturday's election were able to garner more than 50 per cent of the vote constitutionally required for an outright win.
Mr Guterres was on around 28 per cent; Mr Ruak 25 per cent; and Mr Ramos-Horta on 18 per cent, with about 73 per cent of the total votes cast counted, Mr Valls said.
Mr Guterres was "happy with the result" so far, his campaign media spokesman Jose said, adding low voter turnout might have affected his overall vote.
"His campaign team is already working on a strategy for the run-off round, which he is confident he will win."
Saturday's vote marked the poor and chronically unstable country's second presidential election as a free nation. It was the first in a series of key events for the country as it enters a pivotal period.
In May, East Timor will celebrate 10 years of independence from Indonesia, and in June, voters will choose a new government in a general election.
At the end of the year the nation of 1.1 million people bids goodbye to UN forces stationed in the country since 1999.

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