Monday, July 6, 2020

Evo Morales announces the convening of a new presidential election in Bolivia

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Nineteen days after the beginning of the demonstrations against his reelection, the Bolivian head of state promised Sunday a new ballot.

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"This decision taken, I call to lower the tension. " Nineteen days after the start of protests against his disputed re-election for a fourth term, Evo Morales finally gave in. The head of state, head of the country since 2006, announced Sunday, November 10 at a press conference, the convening of a new presidential election. The 60-year-old leader had so far ignored accusations of fraud that hovered over the October 20 vote.

Earlier in the day, the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States (OAS) requested this cancellation, based on an audit of the election that showed "Manipulations of the computer system of such a magnitude that they must be thoroughly investigated by the Bolivian State" :

"The first round of the elections of October 20 must be canceled and the electoral process must restart again, with a first round organized as soon as the conditions are put in place giving guarantees of its conduct, foremost among which the composition of a new electoral body. "

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also In Bolivia, part of the opposition demands the annulment of the election

The Supreme Electoral Tribunal renewed

Faced with these sharp criticisms, Evo Morales announced Sunday its decision to "Renew all the members of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE)", accused by protesters of complacency towards him. The new elections, the date of which has not been specified, " enable the Bolivian people to democratically elect new authorities "he promised. Evo Morales did not specify whether he would be a candidate himself or not at the new ballot.

Bolivian opposition leader Carlos Mesa called on the president to resign soon after the publication of the OAS report. "We believe that President Morales must make this decision, if he has an ounce of patriotism left he should withdraw"said Mesa, an unfortunate candidate on 20 October.

Extensive demonstrations began on the night of the first round in La Paz when the Supreme Electoral Tribunal had stopped the publication of the screenings, while a second round between Evo Morales and Carlos Mesa, his closest opponent, seemed to emerge. . The outgoing head of state was finally declared the winner with a little more than 10% ahead of Carlos Mesa, propelling him to a new term until 2025.

Immediately, the result of the vote was described as fraudulent by the opposition, and the angry crowd was out in the streets of the country. The wave of protest that has shaken the country for three weeks has left three dead and 200 wounded. The administration had tried to calm the situation by accepting that the OAS was investigating the ballot, but signs of a worsening of the situation had increased in recent hours, with mutinies of police units and of state media by protesters.

Developments that led Evo Morales to warn the public against the risk of coup d'etat. "Our democracy is in danger because of the current coup d'etat that violent groups have launched against the constitutional order"Morales wrote on Twitter on Friday night.

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