Against the right-wing disinformation campaign on Bolivian elections!

Bolivians celebrate electoral victory of the Movement Toward Socialism, Oct. 24. Photo: Ollie Vargas

Statement from Colectivo Kawsay, an organization of Bolivian diaspora and descendants in the District of Columbia/Maryland/Virginia in solidarity with Indigenous peoples, campesinos and working-class peoples. 

Following the news of the overwhelming victory of Bolivian presidential candidate and leader of the Movement Towards Socialism, Luis Arce, right-wing extremist, fascist paramilitary groups and their supporters are attempting to destabilize the Bolivian government and the transition of power. They are currently demanding an annulment of the election results and military intervention and are citing unfounded accusations of fraud and spreading misinformation from the 2019 election process.

Colectivo Kawsay denounces these efforts, led by groups like Comité Cívico Pro Santa Cruz, Resistencia Juvenil Cochala, Unión Juvenil Cruceñista, Luis Fernando Camacho’s party CREEMOS and others. Their efforts to destabilize and divide have even reached Bolivia’s diaspora in the U.S. This includes misinformation campaigns on social media networks with unreliable sources, false news, falsely dated photographs and misinformation spreading confusion and further division across the community. We denounce groups like Dark Horse Political, a far-right consultation firm based in Washington, D.C., that played a part in the coup d’etat of 2019, and its leaders, who are now attempting to cause unrest and doubt by misinforming the Bolivian population in the Washington area.

These far-right groups are attempting to discredit the 2020 elections, which had 88 percent voter turnout, one of the biggest in Bolivian history, and resulted in Luis Acre winning the presidency with 55.1 percent of the popular vote, positioning his party at 26 points ahead of Comunidad Ciudadana, which only obtained 28.8 percent of the vote. 

The recent official election results have been internationally recognized, verified by international observers, acknowledged by the fascist Trump administration and, surprisingly, even by the Organization of American States (OAS). The maximum electoral authority in Bolivia has publicly acknowledged that these fake news and misinformation campaigns by right-wing groups claiming fraud are a threat to Bolivian democracy. 

The protests led by these groups that are emerging in Bolivia and the Washington area do not represent the will of the Bolivian people. These extremist right-wing groups do not and have never represented the interests of the Bolivian people, but rather those of the neocolonial Bolivian oligarchs, racist and fascist civic associations, and agro-industry business.

These groups pose an extreme threat to our community. We call on our friends, allies and community to join us in denouncing these far-right groups, respect the outcome of the elections and demand a peaceful transition of power. 

Oct. 28, 2020