Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Bolivia Says Yes to Constitutional Changes

Bolivia says Yes!

Re-founding underway, Evo affirms

LA PAZ, January 25.—President Evo Morales confirmed today from the balcony of the Quemado Palace that the re-founding of Bolivia is underway, in reference to the triumph at the polls of the new Constitution, by a large majority.

Addressing a huge crowd gathered in the Murillo Plaza, the Bolivian leader emphasized that the approval of the Constitution replacing the one in force since 1967 is the result of the people’s awareness, PL reports.

In that context, he thanked the people for supporting the process of change initiated in January 2006.

"It is thanks to those people who made it possible with their vote that a new Bolivia with equality for all is being re-founded," he commented.

Morales praised the contribution to the victory provided by the social movements, particularly those in the campesino and indigenous sectors, historically excluded and exploited.

"Today marks the end of the colonial and neoliberal state represented by governments that do nothing more than to auction off our natural resources," he affirmed, in reference to articles in the new Constitution defending national ownership of the principal raw materials.

At the same time he noted that "the implementation of the new Constitution is one of the greatest challenges lying ahead."

"This is the beginning of the new Bolivia, a state with a nation. The ill-named Media Luna (half moon) has been left behind to give way to the ‘Full Moon,’ a united and more dignified Bolivia," he stated.

The constitutional referendum in Bolivia closed peacefully with a 60% ‘Yes’ to the draft constitution by close to four million voters, as revealed in the preliminary results.

Translated by Granma International

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