Sadyr Japarov, a populist politician with a nationalist agenda was on the path to an easy win Sunday in Kyrgyzstan's presidential election, the first vote following recent political upheaval in the Central Asian country.
Results published showed Japarov with close to 80% of the vote, based on projections.
A referendum held in parallel showed Kyrgyz strongly preferring presidential rule, which would grant Japarov sweeping powers when a new constitution is passed, most probably later this year.
The referendum vote spells the end of political system adopted a decade ago to tame authoritarianism after two successive strongman presidents were ejected from power during street protests in 2005 and 2010.
Just over 10% supported a parliamentarian system.