Ecuador is holding general elections on Sunday, with the focus of the vote on President Rafael Correa, who is facing off against seven challengers in his bid for re-election.
"We should all guard the transparency of the process to make this process the most inclusive and transparent in the country's history," Correa said after voting at a school in Quito.
Correa is taking on former banker Guillermo Lasso, former President Lucio Gutierrez, former Cabinet minister Alberto Acosta, banana mogul Alvaro Noboa, evangelical minister Nelson Zavala, former city official Norman Wray and attorney Mauricio Rodas in the presidential race.
"Citizens have their futures in their hands" and should "exercise the right to vote with absolute responsibility and with infinite love," Correa said.
A total of 1,432 candidates, including the eight presidential hopefuls, are vying for the offices up for grabs in Sunday's general elections.
Observers from different organizations, including the Organization of American States, or OAS, and the Union of South American Nations, or Unasur, are in Ecuador to monitor the vote. EFE