MAS announces it will do its own vote counting in Bolivia

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The Bolivian Movement for Socialism (MAS) party has set up its own system for quickly polling elections in Bolivia, due to the last-minute decision by the country’s Superior Electoral Court (TSE) not to issue preliminary voting results.

The decision was announced on Sunday (18) by the candidate of MAS for the Presidency of Bolivia, former Minister of Economy Luis Arce.

“Let’s be careful, we have our own counting system that will give us results in advance,” Arce told reporters as he headed for his campaign’s headquarters after voting for La Paz.

The Preliminary Results Disclosure System (Direpre) had been promoted by the TSE as a key to avoiding susceptibilities and reports of fraud such as those that led to the annulment of the October 2019 elections and the consequent overthrow of MAS President Evo Morales, amidst threats from the military and harassment of party members.

© AP Photo / Juan Karita

In La Paz, Bolivia, the candidate for the Presidency of the Movement for Socialism (MAS), Luis Arce, shows his ballot paper before depositing it in the polls during the country’s general elections, on October 18, 2020

Arce criticized the TSE for having closed down Direpre even before putting it into operation. The cancellation of the Direpre program, announced on Saturday night (17), a few hours before the start of the vote, was considered a success by international observers who warned of the risks of causing conflict by initially giving an image that did not match the official count. .

The TSE “has had time like no other court to do the tests”, but “has not done a job with responsibility and seriousness” to develop a reliable system of preliminary results that would eliminate electoral uncertainty on Sunday (18), the candidate said.

“We observed exactly how this system was being executed, we did this in writing to TSE and international observers, we pointed out that it was a step backwards in terms of transparency”, recalled Arce, adding that, due to this situation, MAS will use the calculation own.

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