Bolivia: next presidential election set for September 6
(Illustration) The interim president of Bolivia Jeanine Añez at a press conference in La Paz on November 15, 2019. RONALDO SCHEMIDT / AFP
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Interim Bolivian President Jeanine Áñez finally promulgated the law on Sunday, June 21, which calls for general elections on September 6. The polls, which should have been held on May 3, had been postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The date of the next general election was the occasion for heated discussions between the acting president, the Supreme Electoral Court and parliamentarians. " I received pressure demanding elections on September 6, that is to say in the middle of a pandemic, " regretted the president in a recorded message, rejecting any desire to stay in power. According to Jeanine Añez, Bolivia will then be in the middle of a pandemic peak.
La Asamblea Legislativa, controlada por el MAS, ha aprobado la ley para elecciones el 6 de septiembre. He recibido presiones del MAS, by Carlos Mesa y otros políticos para ir a elecciones. pic.twitter.com/XuFI4g1J15Jeanine Añez Chavez (@JeanineAnez) June 21, 2020
The date had been decided - and the law passed by the two chambers in mid-June - after an agreement between the MAS party, Movimiento al Socialismo (MAS) de Morales, which controls the two chambers with a large majority, the Supreme Electoral Court, the centrist candidate Carlos Mesa and some minor movements. But the president refused to promulgate the law organizing the ballot. According to the Constitution, if she persisted in her refusal, it was up to the Legislative Assembly to promulgate the electoral law.
Fear of an epidemic peak
By postponing the elections " we will all be winners ", argued the interim president who wanted to postpone the poll for a month or two. The health authorities estimate that in July and August the pandemic will be at its maximum. According to projections, at the end of July, the Covid-19 could have infected 100,000 people and caused between 4,000 and 7,000 deaths.
Read also : In Bolivia, the city of La Paz completely "encapsulated"
The Minister of Health Eidy Roca, assured this Sunday morning June 21 to the press that the number of contaminations in Bolivia would reach a peak of 130,000 cases in mid-September. On Saturday, Bolivia registered more than 1,000 new cases in 24 hours, for the first time since the start of the epidemic.
In a last poll in March, Luis Arce, candidate supported by ex-president Evo Morales who is being sued by the justice of his country and whose presidential candidacy was invalidated , was at the top of the voting intentions with 33, 3% of the votes.
Read also : Evo Morales chooses two former ministers for the presidential
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