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Christian singer leads in presidential poll

by Eno Adeogun

The songwriter however failed to reach 40 per cent of the votes so will now have to compete in the runoff on 1st April against ex-government minister Carlos Alvarado Quesada, who was also once a singer in a rock band.

The 43-year-old from the evangelical National Restoration Party, became widely popular candidate after denouncing a court ruling calling on the Central American country to give civil marriage rights to same-sex couples.


He has threatened to pull Costa Rica out of the court, which is based in the capital, San Jose.

"People said, 'This is the person that I want to defend us in the face of international impositions'," he told a Costa Rican radio station after he took the lead in opinion polls.

While the country is deeply Catholic, evangelical Christianity has emerged as a religious and political force in recent years.

In all, 13 candidates ran to replace President Luis Guillermo Solis of the centre-left Citizen's Action Party (PAC).

Final first-round results will be published later on Monday.

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