Justice is finally done! After a year of the coup, the Bolivian people have once again expressed their will against neoliberalism, its policies and economic interests aimed at destroying their country. The election results arrived at one a.m., after several delays by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (SET) in giving unofficial data. According to Unitel-Ciesmori estimates, Luis Arce got 52.4% of the votes, Carlos Mesa got 31.5%, while the oligarch leader of the coup, right-wing Fernando Camacho, got only 14.5%. According to Bolivia’s election law, in order for a candidate to win in the first round, he must obtain more than 50% of the votes or more than 40% with a 10% advantage over their closest rival. These results set forth a glorious and overwhelming victory for the MAS. More than 7.3 million Bolivians went to the polls this Sunday with a large turnout in the electoral districts in compliance with health measures for Covid-19.
Evo Morales had declared that the internal tabulation mechanism, set up by the MAS, against possible fraud and electoral fraud, had revealed the victory of the elections by the MAS. The Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro showed his solidarity, while Morales wrote in a tweet that the will of the people won and that now “we will restore dignity and freedom to the people”.
“In light of the results, we want to thank the Bolivian people and all our militants; we took important steps: we have recovered democracy and hope (…). Our commitment is to work and carry out our program, we will govern for all Bolivians and build the unity of our country. (…) We will restore the country’s economy: we have an obligation to redirect our process of change without hatred, by understanding and overcoming our mistakes. (…) The results show that the people are wise and we will meet all expectations”- these are the statements of Luis Arce after the victory.
The coup leader Anez was forced to admit the victory of the MAS. Although the coup right-wing and the coup army generals are not quite inclined to accept a victory in the first round of the MAS, exactly as the Italian liberal newspaper La Repubblica, which shamefully defined the Bolivian elections as an example of a “democratic coup”.
Despite this, the game is not yet won. The victory will be confirmed by the SET through the official results available on Tuesday. If everything goes according to plan, Lucho Arce and David Choquehuanca will be Bolivia’s next president and vice president. Attention must remain high to monitor a possible reversal of the electoral result. In recent days, army officers’ statements have publicly denounced the plan of the Interior Minister, Arturo Murillo, to import large-caliber weapons from the United States to distribute them clandestinely to military police and paramilitary groups, with orders to shoot indigenous peasants if they decide to protest against the alleged fraud that the coup is organizing.
Translation by Ilaria Cuppone, from the voluntary Pressenza translation team. We are looking for volunteers!