Morales: This win is a triumph for anti-imperialists and anti-colonialists

Evo Morales wins third term in Bolivia

Morales wins a thrid term 2

Evo Morales won over 60 per cent of the vote last night | teleSUR

In what is being claimed as a victory for “anti-imperialists,” President Evo Morales on Sunday was elected to his third term as Bolivia’s president.

Morales, who in 2006 became the country’s first indigenous leader, won a landslide 61 per cent of the vote, according to exit polling. His closest rival, businessman Samuel Doria Medina, had 24 per cent. Medina was Bolivia’s Minister for Coordination and Planning in 1991-1993 when the country privatized many state institutions for below market prices.

Nationalization won over privatization

chavez fidel y evo with flags

Morales dedicated his win to leftist leaders Fidel Castro of Cuba and Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s late president.

“This was a debate on two models: nationalization or privatization. Nationalization won with more than 60 per cent (support),” the Socialist leader told the thousands who gathered outside the presidential palace Sunday evening. Morales dedicated his win to leftist leaders Fidel Castro of Cuba and Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s late president.

“This win is a triumph for anti-imperialists and anti-colonialists,” Morales declared.

Poverty has fallen in Bolivia

Under his leadership, the number of Bolivians living in extreme poverty has fallen from more than a third of the population to one in five since 2006. Further, his policies have provided economic growth averaging above 5 per cent a year.

Polling also suggested that the former coca grower’s Movement Toward Socialism party would also maintain power in both the lower and upper houses in Congress. According to analysis, this will allow for the leader to keep pursuing his agenda of “indigenous socialism,” under which he has nationalized major industries such as oil and gas to build new roads and schools and finance welfare programs across the state.

Regional integration 

Morales emphasized the importance of regional integration to defend the sovereignty of American countries, and expressed his hope that progressive governments in Brazil and Uruguay will also be re-elected in elections in two weeks.

“We will respect the electoral results of each country, but we wish to continue working, united, for our Latin America and the Caribbean,” said the president.

He explained that in the past in Bolivia, less than 50 percent of the population participated in elections, “because the people did not have any faith in the candidates …. so right-wing candidates would win with less than 20 percent of the vote.”

Morales argued however, that he had received such high voter supporter because of his opposition to the privatization of basic services. Platforms that aimed to do that were “strongly rejected” by Bolivians in the elections, he said.

The importance of fighting for sovereignty

evo for the people

When the right-wing is in power, he argued, the banks and businesspeople rule; when a left president is in power, the people rule.

In terms of what he has learnt as a president, he highlighted the importance of fighting for sovereignty when governing a country, above anything else – “even above economics, so the people are free and sovereign.”

He ended the interview regretting that Bolivia’s Electoral Council still has not released official results. It legally has up to 15 days to declare the final results. Morales said he likely got a vote close to 67 per cent, compared to exit poll results which have given him 60 per cent, as those polls tend to ignore people in rural and poor areas, where he has greater support.

“What happened yesterday is huge, historic, unprecedented, and it’s because we have morals, and a program, that is what matters… the opposition is always rejecting things, they never have proposals,” he concluded.

Monday press conference

On Monday morning, President Morales welcomed both local and international press for a press conference to discuss his victory and the gains made by his party Movement Toward Socialism (MAS).

Morales declared that “We are very happy, it is not easy to be reelected with more than 60 per cent, we have made history in Bolivia.” He said that the electoral results constitute a victory for the social movements in the country as well, adding, “It moves me to share this triumph with all of you, with the Bolivian people.” He emphasized that this victory also carries symbolic weight, “[In Bolivia] we have changed, it is important to ratify that politics is about service for the people,” saying “Nationalization has won here and that our services are a human right.” He called on the opposition, who suffered a large defeat to work with his government and to offer concrete proposals, explaining “Bolivia no longer wants confrontation, it is for that reason that we invite all sectors to work together with us.”

President Morales then opened the floor up to questions, where he analyzed his own personal trajectory to the Presidency. The final question came from a North American reporter, who asked the President to respond to accusations that his government acts in authoritarian manner. Morales responded by asserting that his government has always worked hand-in-hand with social movements, putting forward proposals together. He criticized the governments of the past who “Never left the Government Palace” and who ruled, not by winning the confidence of the people, but rather through so-called mega coalitions.

Elections were also held for the 130 seat Chamber of Deputies, where MAS won 117 of the seats — 13 more than before — results for the Senate elections were not immediately available but are expected to be consistent with the results in the lower chamber. With two thirds of the seats in the Congress, Morales and the MAS party will be free to implement their program and policies.

Sources:

JSC: Jamaicans in Solidarity with Cuba

In ‘Victory for Anti-Imperialists,’ Evo Morales Wins Third Term, Common Dreams

Evo Morales to teleSUR: Official Result Likely Higher than 60%, Telesur


Latin American presidents celebrate re-election of Evo Morales

teleSUR (Oct. 13) – With 60 per cent support of the Bolivian people in Sunday’s elections, Evo Morales received congratulatory messages on his historic victory from presidents from around Latin America.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was the first to send out greetings to Evo and the Bolivian people, stating on Twitter, “Long live Bolivia, long live Tupac Katari, long live Simon Bolivar, long live Sucre, long live Hugo Chavez, long live Fidel, long live Evo!” Placing Evo among some of Latin America’s greatest and most-revered leaders.

President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador also sent his greetings via his Twitter account, saying, “Democracy is strengthened, #Bolivia continues to build hope for Latin America and the world @EvoMPresidente.”

President Jose Mujica of Uruguay called Evo on Sunday night to offer his congratulations. As did Argentinian President Cristina Fernandez.

Morales received more than 80 per cent of votes of Bolivians living outside their country. His overwhelming victory in Sunday’s elections is being interpreted by the region’s leaders as a consolidation of the victory of anti-imperialist and anti-colonial parties and movements that have sweep through the region over the last decade.

The governments of Spain and France also released statements recognizing Morales’ victory in the elections, with France also making note that its electoral mission observed that the vote was conducted fairly.

Morales first won the post of President in 2005, with this new mandate he will preside over Bolivia until 2020.


Opposition illegally released election results early

teleSUR (Oct. 13) – The Electoral Tribunal head has said that Samuel Doria Medina will face an investigation after his party released some initial results before the allowed time.

The Bolivian opposition candidate, Samuel Doria with the Democratic Unity party will be reprimanded by the Bolivian Supreme Electoral Tribunal for releasing electoral results outside the allowed time.

Juan Carlos Pinto, director of the department responsible for monitoring the electoral information, told the Bolivian Radio Panamericana that this violated the rules and was used in order to encourage people to vote for his party.

Doria reported that he won one of the polling booths in Japan, despite the prohibition of the reporting of results before 8 p.m. local time on Sunday.

The Democratic Unity leader was in Sunday’s presidential election against President Evo Morales, in which according to preliminary results won 60 percent of votes, with Doria trailing far behind on 25 percent.

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