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Bolivia

Yearbook 2015

Bolivia. According to COUNTRYAAH, President Evo Morales looked to suffer one of his biggest political defeats in the March 29 regional elections. His party The Movement for Socialism (MAS) won in only four of the country's nine provinces. Among other things, the party lost both the election to the provincial governor of La Paz and the mayor's election in the capital La Paz as well as in the traditionally MAS-dominated and politically important suburb of El Alto. In contrast, the party in Cochabamba, Oruro, Pando and Potosí won in the highlands, where the party has its strongest support. In two of the provinces where the governor's election was decided in a second round on May 3, MAS, with a slight margin, won for the first time in Beni while the opposition, according to expectations, won in Tarija. The opposition's victory in the eastern province of Santa Cruz was not surprising; MAS has had its greatest resistance for a long time. In the end, MAS controlled six of nine provinces.

2015 Bolivia

In early November, the Congress, where the ruling party MAS has a majority, approved a referendum on a partial constitutional amendment to allow two consecutive elections for a sitting president. If approved, Morales will be able to stand for a further re-election in 2019. Morales is already the Bolivian president who has been in power for the longest time. According to an opinion poll in early November, he was supported by 66% of voters, while another survey a few weeks earlier showed that just under half were prepared to support the constitutional change. The date of the referendum was set for February 2016. The opposition's concern that the referendum will not go completely right led the President of the Election Commission to invite several international organizations, including the EU, to monitor it.

Morale's popularity is based on the successful fight against poverty during his ten years as president. The poor proportion of the population has fallen from 60% to 38% and extreme poverty from 38% to 18%.

Morales, however, was not completely unmoved. Another referendum was held in September on a government proposal to increase the autonomy of the provinces. The proposal was voted down in five provinces, which are also some of the government's strongest holdings. Morales was also criticized for supporting development projects that the indigenous people oppose, and in July a protest strike was held in Potosí.

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