Guatemala City – Retired Gen. Otto Perez Molina, winner of Guatemala's runoff election, proclaimed himself the new president-elect and told voters he will not disappoint them.
"I'm happy and motivated by the response of Guatemalans. I'm excited, enthusiastic, but I realize the degree of responsibility I have to come up with the right answers for them and not let them down," Perez Molina told reporters.
The 61-year-old Perez Molina thanked the more than 2 million citizens who gave him their vote and vowed not to let them down.
"I'll do everything I can to achieve the peace and security that Guatemala needs so much. We'll work to create more jobs and greater development," the retired general said.
Perez Molina, of the rightist Patriotic Party, won 54.89 percent of valid votes, or nearly 10 percent more than his rival, populist lawyer Baldizon of the Renewed Democratic Freedom, or Lider, party, official figures show.
Perez Molina will succeed Alvaro Colom, who defeated him the first time he ran for president in 2007 and who will hand over power to him on Jan. 14.
Colom's social democratic UNE party was left without a presidential standard-bearer when the Constitutional Court struck down the candidacy of former first lady Sandra Torres, who was trying to succeed her husband as president.
Article 186 of the Guatemalan Constitution bars family members of sitting presidents from seeking the presidency, a prohibition that Torres tried to get around by divorcing Colom in April.
The Constitutional Court voted unanimously to uphold previous rulings by election officials and the Supreme Court that the divorce was a sham.