Objectivity of OAS report on Bolivian elections questioned

Washington - The Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), based in Washington DC, refuted claims that the audit conducted by the Organization of American States (OAS) on the elections held in Bolivia in October was objective.

In messages posted on its Twitter accounts in English and Spanish on Thursday, CEPR stressed, 'The report repeats the worst errors of their previous work and introduces more. This is not an objective audit.'

According to CEPR, the report of the regional organization is being reviewed and an in-depth review will be published in the coming days. In a study released last month, CEPR experts noted, 'Statistical analysis of election returns and tally sheets from Bolivia's October 20 elections shows no evidence that irregularities or fraud affected the official result that gave President Evo Morales a first-round victory.'

After the elections, the OAS began to refer to the existence of irregularities, without even having prepared a complete study on the issue, and its claims were used to justify the violence generated in the country and the subsequent coup d'état against Morales on November 10.

CEPR co-Director Mark Weisbrot said the OAS press statement of October 21 and its preliminary report on the Bolivian elections raise disturbing questions about the organization's commitment to impartial, professional electoral observation.

In an open letter published this week, more than 100 economists and statisticians from universities and research centers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Brazil, India and Australia, among other countries, called on the OAS 'o retract its misleading statements about the election.'


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