Bharrat Jagdeo, of the Peoples Progressive Party Civic (PPP) has a substantial lead over his main rival, Robert Corbin, the leader of the Peoples National Congress Reform-One Guyana (PNC) with 34 per cent of the ballots in Monday's vote counted, the electoral authority said Tuesday.

Jagdeo had won 68,104 votes, compared with 42,683 for Corbin.

Jagdeo can return to the presidency if the PPP pulls in the largest share of the vote, but will need support from another party if the PPP cannot capture more than half of the 65-seat legislature.

The Guyana electoral commission said a new party, the Alliance For Change (AFC), was in third place, for the first time in the South American country, which until 1966 was a British colony.

Formed nine months ago by two disgruntled former executives of the two dominant parties, the AFC has won 10,514 votes.