News ID: 275669
Published: 0341 GMT October 18, 2020

Bolivia votes for president after a year without elected leaders

Bolivia votes for president after a year without elected leaders
Members of the jury prepare a polling station before the presidential election in La Paz, Bolivia, Oct. 18, 2020.


Bolivians voted in presidential and congressional elections on Sunday with the socialist movement seeking a return to power a year after their leader Evo Morales was ousted and fled the country.

Morales’s ally Luis Arce, a UK-educated economist, is ahead in polls, but needs to avoid a runoff in which voters opposed to his socialist party can unite behind a single candidate, Bloomberg reported.

His main opponent is former president Carlos Mesa, an ex-journalist who led the country from 2003-2005.

Polls were open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The vote is the first since last year’s chaotic election, which led to violent unrest and accusations of fraud. Since then, Bolivia has been run by an unelected transition government which Arce and his supporters regard as illegitimate.

Under Bolivian election rules, a candidate can win in the first round with just 40 percent of the vote, provided there’s a margin of more than 10 percentage points over the runner-up. If no one wins in the first round, there’ll be a runoff on Nov. 29.







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