Six opposition parties opposing candidates of the ruling Sandinista National Liberation Front advocate ideologies ranging from devout Marxism-Leninism to staunch anti-communism: the Independent Liberal Party (PLI), the Conservative Democratic Party (PCD), and four Marxist fringe parties.
The PLI had said it would withdraw from the elections, charging a lack of guarantees for free voting, but the Sandinistas said only candidates and not entire parties could withdraw, since the ballots were already printed.
The president of the Supreme Electoral Council, Mariano Fiallos, said Saturday that he had not received a formal withdrawal from any PLI candidates, so, effectively, the PLI is still participating. ---
Virgilio Godoy, the presidential candidate for the PLI, which was highly respected for refusing to cooperate with dictator Anastasio Somoza before the Sandinistas took power in July 1979, is a 50-year-old sociologist who served as Labor Minister for the Sandinista government until resigning last spring.
Godoy's running mate, Constantino Pereira, a 49-year-old economist educated in the United States, spent the last four years before his candidacy as vice-president of an economic research institute that advised the Sandinista government. ---
Clemente Guido, a 55-year-old doctor, is the presidential candidate for the Democratic Conservative Party, a breakaway faction of the traditional Conservative Party and the most outspoken in its criticism of the Sandinistas.
Guido, born in Managua province, was a member of the Council of Political Parties before his candidacy.
Guido's running mate is Merceditas Rodriguez de Chamorro, a long-time activist respected for her strong participation in attempts to oust Somoza. ---
The Socialist Party of Nicaragua, the largest of the four Marxist parties outside of the FSLN, is launching Domingo Antonio Sanchez Salgado, 71, as its presidential candidate. The son of peasants, Sanchez is known throughout the country as a long-time labor activist and peasant organizer.
His running mate, Adolfo Jose Evertsz, has long been associated with leftist revolutionaries in El Salvador and in pre-Somoza Nicaragua. ---
The Marxist Leninist Popular Action Movement, the most radical of the parties, selected Isidro Ignacio Tellez, 36, as its presidential candidate. Tellez, a high level representative of labor unions, was born in the city of Leon to a family of farm laborers.
His running mate, Juan Alberto Henriquez Oporta, 37, has likewise spent most of his adult life in labor organizations and strongly supported the Sandinistas when they took over the government. ---
The Popular Social Christian Party is a small faction of the older Social Christian Party. Its presidential candidate, Mauricio Diaz Davila, 34, is Jesuit-educated and was, until recently, a leading member of the Nicaraguan State Council.
The State Council is a government body orginally comprised of representatives from all sectors of the country that has a voice in the laws established by the ruling Sandinista junta.
Diaz Davila's running mate is Guillermo Antonio Mejia Silva, from a small town in the central Masaya province. He served as a member of the State Council in 1981. ---
The Communist Party candidate for the presidency, 30-year-old Allan Zambrana Salmeron, has spent his political career in union and labor organizing, for which he was imprisoned several times during the Somoza years.
His running mate, Manuel Perez Estrada, 70, is the Communist Party's representative in the State Council.