Latin America has always felt the influence of foreign countries, despite the independence obtained by each nation, and now Bolivia can feel Trump’s administration trying to get closer and closer. A discussion on the topic will take place in London on 30 April.
Evo Morales, a former leader of the coca-growers’ union is the first indigenous person to become president of Bolivia. He was elected for the first time in 2005 and assumed office on the 22nd of January, 2006. Since that day he has won the following two elections, remaining in charge of the country for thirteen years. Now, he is planning to run again for the elections which will be held in October of the current year.
The Constitutional Court, in 2017, scrapped the limits which would not allow a president to hold more than two presidential terms, saying that they were against the candidates’ human right. Evo Morales now has the opportunity to present himself at the presidential elections, for what would be his fourth consecutive term. This Court decision has been described by the opponents as a “blow to democracy”.
During the past decade, the President has renationalised the oil and gas industries working in the country, and with the money coming from those industries, he was able to invest them in public works projects. As a result poverty was reduced by 25%.
He also made his voice heard at international climate negotiations where he referred to indigenous and respect for Mother Earth.
However he was criticised, even by the people who supported him at the beginning of his career, for adopting policies that seemed to favour the rich minority. He also met widespread opposition from the indigenous groups when he proposed a plan for a major motorway from Villa Tunari to San Ignacio de Moxos.
Now, the new elections are coming, and many countries would have interests in getting involved in the internal affairs of Bolivia.
That’s why the Labour Friends of Progressive Latin America will host the meeting “Bolivia, Evo Morales and the Transformation of a nation”, to stand up for this Latin American country and its right to decide its own future.
Bolivian trade unionist, Manuel Bueno, former Telesur English Journalist Georgia Platman, and the shadow International Development Secretary, Dan Carden MP, will discuss this crucial point regarding the future of Bolivia.
According to the organisers: “with the Trump administration’s interventionist agenda in Latin America, there is growing concern that Bolivia is now in its sights too. Bolivia goes to the polls in October to elect its President and Evo Morales is seeking re-election”.
They also said: “President Morales has acted to recover Bolivia’s wealth, including its oil and gas industries, from foreign corporations, gaining over $30 billion in 10 years to invest in development, compared to the $2.5bn in the previous decade of neoliberal policies. Leading the way in Latin America, the economy grew by 4.4 per cent in 2018, according to the UN”. Furthermore, they stated that “extreme poverty has been cut from nearly 40 to 17 per cent. No other government in Bolivia’s history has done more to restore dignity to the majority indigenous population, including the recovery of land illegally appropriated by large landowners. And Bolivia is now a leading voice for international justice and action to tackle climate change”.
Date and place: Tuesday, 30 April 2019 from 6.30 pm. to 8.00 pm. at the Unite House 128 Theobalds Rd, WC1X 8TN London, United Kingdom. For further information, visit Labour Friends of Progressive Latin America and the Facebook event page.