Perspectives Part II: Politics in Bolivia

On Sunday, November 10, 2019, preliminary results of the audit reported announced that there had been “clear manipulation” of the October 20 election results. One day before the preliminary report was released, police officers in La Paz abandoned their posts at the presidential palace and sided with opposition protestors. Following the release of the report, multiple government officials announced their resignations, but these resignations alone were not enough to pacify the opposition protestors. Opposition leaders, the commander of the Bolivian police force and the head of Bolivia’s armed forces all went on to push for Morales’ resignation.

Less than an hour after the head of the military made his statement, President Morales announced his resignation from office on national television. Josh and I were planning a lesson in a coffee shop just outside of Jupapina when news of his resignation came. Before Morales had even finished speaking, people began cheering and running out into the street. They were waving flags, setting off fireworks and car alarms.

But not everyone was rejoicing. As people began taking to the streets, we turned to Silvia, our Bolivian co-volunteer, and asked “So, what happens now?”

“That’s the problem,” she said. “Nobody knows.”