Mauricio Funes (L Front) from the left-wing opposition party Farabundo Marti Front for the National Liberation (FMLN), gestures after voting in Antiguo Cuscatlan, south of San Salvador, during the presidential election in El Salvador, on March 15, 2009. Mauricio Funes said he won the election on Sunday. (Xinhua/David de la Paz)
Left-wing opposition candidate Mauricio Funes won El Salvador's presidential election on Sunday, figures released by the country's election commission showed.
Funes of the Farabundo Marti Front for the National Liberation Party (FMLN) garnered 51.27 percent of the vote against 48.73 percent for Rodrigo Avila of the ruling conservative ARENA party, according to the figures.
Funes, born in 1959 and one of the most influential media workers in El Salvador, has promised to push reform in education, health and to fight poverty in the country.
As one of the two major political parties in El Salvador, the FMLN participated in the country's presidential elections in 1994,1999 and 2004.
The FMLN, a former guerrilla organization, became a legal political party in 1992.
More than 4.22 million people registered for Sunday's election, accounting for some 63 percent of the country's population.
Four candidates were competing for the presidency, with Avila and Funes seen as the two main contenders.
Presidential candidate of the leftist Farabundo Marti Front for National Liberation (FMLN) Mauricio Funes (R) gestures after votes in San Salvador during presidential elections in El Salvador, on March 15, 2009.(Xinhua/David de la Paz)