Parliamentary Chamber: Cámara de Diputados


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  Cámara de Diputados

Dates of elections / renewal (from/to):

  1 June 1997

Purpose of elections:

  Elections were held for all the seats in Parliament on the normal expiry of the members' term of office.

Background and outcome of elections:

  The 1997 congressional elections were held simultaneously with those for President and Vice-President of the Republic.

Major contenders of the 10 running in the presidential poll were the former military ruler and President (from 1971 to 1978) Hugo Banzer Suarez of the right-wing Nationalist Democratic Action (ADN) alliance, Mr. Juan Carlos Duran of the ruling centre-right Nationalist Revolutionary Movement (MNR) and former President (from 1989 to 1993) Jaime Paz Zamora of the social-democratic Movement of the Revolutionary Left (MIR). Outgoing President Gonzalo Sanchez de Losada (MNR) was ineligible for re-election. Campaign debate centred on economic and social questions, with all top candidates (and especially Mr. Duran) promising to continue free-market reforms put in place by Mr. Gonzalo; these reforms gradually improved the economy in Bolivia, South America's poorest country. In this connection, Mr. Banzer vowed to fight poverty and improve services for the majority Indian population.

On polling day, Mr. Banzer and Mr. Duran obtained the most presidential votes but as both fell short of an absolute majority they faced a runoff in Congress on 4 August; this contest was ultimately won by Mr. Banzer, who has a five-year term (raised from the previous four). In the congressional races, ADN replaced the MNR as leading party in both Houses but, given especially its low total in the Chamber of Deputies, had to seek the support of other parties in order to arrive at a working parliamentary majority and form the new Cabinet. This was effected with the support of MIR, the Conscience of the Fatherland (CONDEPA) group and the Civic Solidarity Union (UCS).

Round no 1 (1 June 1997): Elections results  
Number of registered electors 3,200,000 (approx.)
Voters 70% (approx.)

Round no 1: Distribution of votes  
Political Group %
Nationalist Democratic Action (ADN) 22.3
Nationalist Revolutionary Movement (MNR) 17.7
Movement of the Revolutionary Left (MIR) 16.7
Civic Solidarity Union (UCS) 15.9
Conscience of the Fatherland (CONDEPA) 15.9
United Left (IU) 3.7
Free Bolivia Movement (MBL) 2.5

Round no 1: Distribution of seats  
Political Group Total
Nationalist Democratic Action (ADN) 33
Nationalist Revolutionary Movement (MNR) 26
Movement of the Revolutionary Left (MIR) 25
Civic Solidarity Union (UCS) 21
Conscience of the Fatherland (CONDEPA) 17
United Left (IU) 4
Free Bolivia Movement (MBL) 4

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Copyright © 1997 Inter-Parliamentary Union