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Evo Morales, exiled since the coup, calls for respect for the popular vote

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São Paulo – The final release of the results of the general elections in Bolivia is expected between Wednesday (21) and Friday (23). The country’s Supreme Electoral Court, on the eve of the vote, suspended the quick counting system and partial results reports. The gesture was seen by observers as a way to avoid a possible early celebration of the Movement for Socialism (MAS), by former President Evo Morales. MAS candidate Luis Arce is a favorite in polls and, according to unofficial exit polls – with a chance to win in the first round. To do so, you will need to reach at least 40% of the votes and a difference of more than 10 percentage points from the runner-up.

Exiled in Argentina and outside the electoral process – banned from running for the Senate -, Evo Morales released yesterday (18) a note in which he makes a general appeal for the results of the ballot boxes to be respected. There is a strong fear that the Bolivian right, a year later losing the election to the former president and forcing his deposition, will try to strike a new coup to prevent the return of MAS to power and the restoration of democratic order.

The tension environment created in the weeks leading up to the
general elections in Bolivia and the conduct of the election on its last day exposed clues
that possibility. Evo himself expressed this concern in his profile in the
Twitter: “It is very worrying
@TSEBolivia decides to suspend the Results Disclosure system
Preliminaries (Direpre) in electoral season. This last-minute decision raises doubts
about your intentions ”.

Supposed tranquility and mistrust

Bolivia elections
luis arce
evo morales
Bolivians residing in São Paulo line up to exercise voting rights and report difficulties (Marina Duarte de Souza / Brasil de Fato)

In several colleges considered to be largely in the MAS, difficulties were created for voter turnout. In Brazil, even, where several ballot boxes with wide advantage of MAS were exposed on social networks on Sunday night, there were many complaints. The main ones were lack of information, difficult access to places and exclusion of voters from the list. Evo Morales obtained 71% of the votes of Bolivians residing in the country in 2019.

The elections in Bolivia were officially closed at 7 pm (Brasília time). About 7.3 million Bolivians were able to go to the polls. Luis Arce’s party spokesman, Freddy Bobaryn, considered the overall balance positive, stressed that there was tranquility for most of the day, but noted the occurrence of disorders involving fraud attempts by supporters of Carlos Mesa, the right-wing candidate of the party. Citizen Community.

According to Professor Gladstone Leonel Jr., a professor at the Federal Fluminense University (UFF) and a specialist in Bolivian constitutionalism, it was “a pleasant surprise” that there were no major problems this Sunday. “On the other hand, it is important to remember that in the last election, when the result was not respected, the biggest problem occurred afterwards, when counting votes.”

“Right to insurrection”

Despite the long lines, images
of the independent information community formed to monitor the elections in
Bolivia gave the impression of tranquility. Throughout the day, however,
some scenes – with ostensible presence of military agents close to areas of
voting, denounced a climate of intimidation.

In the early evening, for example, international and local observers denounced the difficulty of entering electoral zones in Santa Cruz de La Sierra, a predominant territory on the right. At 8 pm in Brasília, an hour after the polls closed, information arrived from observers who had difficulty entering inspection sessions was still difficult. There were also complaints from inspectors reporting to the military, carrying a large number of ballots previously marked on the Carlos Mesa ticket.

In a commentary on the elections in Bolivia, journalist Breno Altman stated that overcoming the climate of mistrust, with respect to the result of the ballot box, would represent a watershed, not only in Bolivian politics but in the continent. Creator of the Opera Mundi website, specialized in international news, Altman fears that a possible disregard for the electoral process will aggravate social tensions in the country. “Bolivia has a duty to respect the popular vote, and the Bolivian people will have the right to insurrection if that does not happen,” he said.


With information from
Brasil de Fato, Page | 12 and Brasil TVT Magazine

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Economy

Argentines say goodbye to Maradona at Casa Rosada

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São Paulo – Thousands of Argentines are gathered in Plaza de Mayo, in the center of Buenos Aires, to bid their last farewell to former player Diego Maradona, the greatest Argentine idol. The body of the world champion has been being watched, since the dawn of this Thursday (26), in Casa Rosada, headquarters of the Argentine government. The last personality who had his farewell at the official residence was former President Néstor Kirchner, who died in 2010.

Maradona’s body arrived at Casa Rosada around 1 am, received by ex-wife Claudia Villafañe and her daughters Dalma and Giannina. This intimate farewell also included the world champions in 1986, as well as other former players, such as defender Mascherano and goalkeeper Goycochea.

The initial forecast of the Argentine government was that the farewell ceremony would continue until Saturday (28). But, at the request of family members, the closure was rescheduled for 4 pm this Thursday.

The wake was open to the public around 6 am. The star’s coffin was covered by the Argentine flag, in addition to a shirt from the national team and another one from Boca Juniors, both with the number 10 “del Diós”.

In the beginning, there was a record of turmoil involving fans and police. Security officers try to control the crowd in an attempt to ensure measures of social distance.

In individual line, they pass by the casket of shirt 10, amid tears, clapping, blessings and thanks. Flowers, shirts and flags are also thrown towards the ace.

By 8 am, the line of fans had already exceeded seven blocks. They also wear shirts from the Argentine national team, Boca or Argentinos Juniors, a team from the capital where Maradona started playing. “It doesn’t look like a wake. It looks like the entrance to a football match ”, said journalist Martin Gonzalez, from the channel All News.

Party night

Despite the restrictions due to the pandemic, the Argentines preferred to gather, in a big party to say goodbye to the idol. During the night, fans of the star and disciples of the “Maradonian Church” started to gather in Praça de Maio.

At the arrival of Boca’s “barra brava” (organized crowd), fireworks were fired, giving the place a championship-ending atmosphere. Maradona was Argentine champion for the club in 1981, before his transfer to Europe, to defend Barcelona.

According to the public news agency Télam, judicial sources said that the autopsy on Maradona’s body determined that “acute pulmonary edema secondary to chronic heart failure” was the cause of his death.

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