Socialist candidate Luis Arce has won Bolivia’s presidential election one year after former President Evo Morales was exiled from the country, according to multiple reports.
The Movement for Socialism Party won a decisive victory over the centrist Comunidad Ciudadana headed by Carlos Mesa, who conceded on Monday, Reuters reported. Incoming President Luis Arce served as the Minister of Economy and Public Finance under longtime leader Evo Morales.
Morales has been living in Argentina since last year’s controversial election, which saw allegations of vote-rigging, according to Reuters. Morales has still been closely advising his party from Buenos Aires and hand-picked Arce to be his successor, per Reuters. (RELATED: Former Mexican Official In US Custody Facing Drug Corruption Charges)
The former president, who ruled for nearly 14 years as the head of the South American country, was forced out after widespread bloody protests erupted one year ago due to the aforementioned disputed election. Critics of the Bolivarian regime claimed Morales had rigged the results to stay in power. Defenders of the socialist government accused the United States of facilitating a coup to install a conservative government in its place.
Socialists swept back to power in Bolivia one year after controversial Morales ousterhttps://t.co/clwu9PJuu8
— Axios (@axios) October 19, 2020
The Organization of American States, a regional organization promoting cooperation in the Western hemisphere, were reportedly the first to raise an alarm about the 2019 election results. Their findings that suggested voter fraud were disputed later on by other experts, per The New York Times. Morales has maintained that the entire sequence of events was a coup attempt.
There is no such dispute reported this time around. Conservative President Jeanine Anez, who gained power amidst a power vacuum after the 2019 election, congratulated Arce on his victory, Reuters says. “We are going to work, and we will resume the process of change without hate,” Arce told reporters, per Reuters.