Citizens head to the polls Sunday for Bolivia’s presidential elections

World Today

Bolivia ballot box A worker of the Bolivian Plurinational Electoral Organism (Organismo Electoral Plurinacional- OEP) demonstrates in La Paz on October 10, 2014, the use of the ballot and box in the general and presidential election of October 12. AFP PHOTO/CRIS BOURONCLE

Bolivians are headed to the polls for the country’s presidential election on Sunday. The incumbent Evo Morales is expected to win by a wide margin, but there are other candidates who have attracted the electorate. CCTV’s Dan Collyns reports from La Paz.

After nine years in power, Evo Morales is still overwhelmingly popular. This is especially true among the indigenous people who first propelled him into office. Their living conditions have improved dramatically and the economy has tripled in size.

Citizens head to the polls Sunday for Bolivia's presidential elections

Citizens head to the polls Sunday for Bolivia's presidential elections

Bolivians are headed to the polls for the country's presidential election on Sunday. The incumbent Evo Morales is expected to win by a wide margin, but there are other candidates who have attracted the electorate. CCTV's Dan Collyns reports from La Paz.

“Before Bolivia was divided in half, the so-called half-moon, now it’s a full moon, we are united,” said President Morales.

Morales closed his campaign confident of victory with polls showing a commanding lead of 40 percent over his closest challenger, cement magnate Samuel Doria Medina, a third-time presidential candidate who says the current leader has become authoritarian.

“It’s clear that in these almost nine years we’ve seen that this government is spending in order to stay in power and to occupy every corner of power,” said Medina.

Medina’s supporters come mostly from the middle class, whereas Morales’ hardcore supporters are largely indigenous and poor.

Between 2001 and 2005, five presidents came and went in the presidential residence, known as the “Burnt Palace”. Evo Morales broke that cycle, and after two terms in office, it appears that many Bolivians want him to stay for another.

If Morales does win the election, completing another five-year term would not only make him the longest-serving president in Bolivia’s history, but also in Latin America.