LA PAZ – South Korean Evangelical Pastor Chi Hyun Chung is the newest name in Bolivia’s presidential election. He will try to prevent current President Evo Morales from securing his third consecutive reelection on October 20 this year.
“He is a new candidate, as people want, to start building a new democratic Bolivia,” said Luis Ayllón, chairman of the Chi Party, the Christian Democratic Party.
The current pastor and presidential candidate arrived in Bolivia in 1992 at the age of 12 and is a doctor at local universities. He will be the second Asian presidential candidate in the country’s history after civil engineer Michiaki Nagatani, the son of Japanese immigrants, competed against Morales in 2005.
To date, there are nine confirmed candidates for the position of president.
According to polls, Morales is close to getting 40% of the vote – enough to be elected in the first round. Second in the polls is former president Carlos Mesa (2003-2005), with 24% of voting intentions.
Morales has been a strong advocate for Latin American unity and a supporter of Venezuela and Cuba. Morales has even made many statements against the US Empire and has said Washington failed to intervene in Caracas.
“The United States failed to intervene in Venezuela, failed the invasion, failed [the attempted coup] and all aggressive, economic and military policies,” Morales proudly said in an interview with Sputnik last month.
The Bolivian president also added that “the US government’s policies towards Venezuela are not the policies of Latin American governments.”
The Bolivian leader warned earlier that neither foreign intervention nor a coup d’état will solve Venezuela’s problems, and called on Latin American countries to preserve regional peace.
Morales reaffirmed his support for the government of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro in the face of domestic economic problems and strong international pressure led by Washington supporting self-styled “interim president” Juan Guaidó.