AMERICA/BOLIVIA - The Bishops: a new date for the elections so as not to endanger the health and life of Bolivians

Wednesday, 6 May 2020 politics   bishops   democracy   human rights  


La Paz (Agenzia Fides) - The Bolivian Episcopal Conference suggests that the Plurinational Assembly together with the Supreme Electoral Court, work in a coordinated way and take into account the difficulty that currently exists due to the coronavirus pandemic and the rapid increase in infections recorded in the country, in order to choose a new date for the general elections in the country. Bolivia, after canceling the electoral rallies on 20 October 2019 (see Fides, 22/10/2019), had set the new elections for 3 May 2020. On 20 March, the parties convened by the Electoral Court had decided to postpone the elections and to enter quarantine for 2 weeks.
Yesterday, Tuesday 5 May, the Bolivian Episcopal Conference, through a statement, asked the national authorities to "impartially" decide the most appropriate moment for the next general elections, so as not to endanger the health and life of all citizens. "The Plurinational Assembly must act in coordination and trust with the Supreme Electoral Court and guarantee clean and transparent elections", says the statement sent to Fides.
Bolivian bishops also remind authorities that on May 2 Pope Francis urged political leaders to end their differences and be united to overcome the Covid-19 pandemic, stressing that their main job is "taking care of their peoples".
The Bishops are concerned about the episodes of violence that have occurred in some areas of the country, which have the interests of some groups or parties at their base, and also the exploitation of the disease and suffering of the people "for their own political propaganda", says the statement. Finally, they recall that the priority is not to endanger the health and life of Bolivians and that it is time to act with responsibility and unity. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 6/5/2020)