As Bolivians went to the polls on Sunday to choose a new president, the election was widely viewed as a referendum on the 14-year political project of Evo Morales, a towering figure in Bolivian politics who lifted hundreds of thousands out of poverty but whose policies and rhetoric often divided the country, reported The New York Times.
the winner of the presidential election will probably not be known immediately due to a slow vote count.
In recent years, even supporters began to abandon Morales amid allegations of misuse of funds, abuse of power and, more recently, a sexual relationship with a minor, the newspaper added.
From the Argentinean city of Buenos Aires, in a press conference, the former president highlighted the democratic and peaceful spirit in which the vote is taking place in his country.
“The most important thing is that we restore democracy and recover our country peacefully,” Morales said as he urged the people not to fall for any provocation.
The political leader condemned the decision of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) to suspend the Preliminary Results Dissemination system (Dirpre) to go directly to the official count.
He urged people to wait calmly for each ballot to be counted, as he asked that the official result be respected.
“In the future, we must all focus our efforts on consolidating democracy, peace, and the economic reconstruction of Bolivia,” he concluded.
The Andean country exploded in violence in 2019 when Morales sought a fourth term in a disputed election that has since been annulled. The social unrest cost at least 30 lives and forced the indigenous leader to resign and fled to Mexico.