Evo Morales says he will return to Bolivia "sooner or later"

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Former Bolivian President Evo Morales, a refugee in Argentina, said on Monday that he would return "sooner or later" to his country, the day after the victory in the first round of his dolphin Luis Arce in the presidential election.

Sooner or later we will return to Bolivia, there is no discussion about that. My great wish is to return to Bolivia, to my region. It's a question of time.

Evo Morales, at a press conference, Monday, in Buenos Aires

The former head of state (2006-2019), the country's first indigenous president, resigned in November 2019, accused of electoral fraud by the opposition, before fleeing to Mexico, then to Argentina.

Luis Arce, former Minister of the Economy of Evo Morales, won the presidential election in Bolivia in the first round on Sunday with more than 52% of the vote, according to several exit polls.

The poll, which took place in peace, was organized after a year of a serious political crisis which left 36 dead.

Luis Arce and two allies hold their hands in the air to celebrate his victory. One of his allies wears a traditional costume.

Luis Arce celebrates his presidential victory. The former Minister of the Economy, Evo Morales, is credited with 52% of the vote, according to exit polls, but his opponent has already conceded victory.

Photo: Getty Images / AFP / RONALDO SCHEMIDT

During the previous presidential election in October 2019, the counting was suspended for more than 20 hours. On his resumption, Evo Morales, who was running for a fourth term, was declared the winner in the first round.

The opposition had denounced fraud, and clashes had taken place between supporters and detractors of the Movement towards Socialism (MAS), founded by Mr. Morales. Dropped by the police and the army, the latter finally resigned.

Even if the official results, whose tally is progressing very slowly, are not yet known, the main rival of Mr. Arce, the former centrist president Carlos Mesa (2003-2005), admitted Monday the large victory of his opponent.

The result is (…) very clearMr. Mesa said of exit polls that give Luis Arce a lead of around 20 points.

It is up to us, as it befits those of us who believe in democracy … to recognize that there was a winner in this election., he added.

The interim president, the conservative Jeanine Añez, had already recognized Sunday evening the victory of the candidate of the MAS.

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