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Final Report of the Audit of the Elections in Bolivia: Intentional Manipulation and Serious Irregularities Made it Impossible to Validate the Results

  December 4, 2019

The General Secretariat of the Organization of American States (OAS) presented today the final report of the audit conducted on the general elections held on October 20 in Bolivia. The conclusion is that there was "intentional manipulation" and "serious irregularities" that make it impossible to validate the results originally issued by the Bolivian electoral authorities.

The full report and its annexes are available here.

The Secretary General of the OAS, Luis Almagro, said “the final audit report represents the integrity of the work of the Organization. It was an evolutionary process that began many months ago, and at each step of which the Organization fulfilled its task with responsibility, affinity to its values and principles, and adherence to the different agreements signed with the Bolivian government. The Bolivian people and their government needed certainty regarding their electoral process and for that they requested the support of the Organization. Neither they nor the rest of the OAS member states deserved any response other than the exceptional and professional work of the audit team reflected in this report.”

The report confirms that the intentional manipulation of the elections took place in two areas. First, the audit detected changes in the minutes and the falsification of the signatures of poll officials. Second, it was found that in the processing of the results the data flow was redirected to two hidden servers and not controlled by personnel of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), which made it possible to manipulate data and falsify minutes.

To this are added serious irregularities, such as the lack of protection of the acts and the loss of sensitive material. The report also details a significant number of errors and indices.

The audit findings also reveal the partiality of the electoral authority. The members of the TSE, who were tasked with ensuring the legality and integrity of the process, allowed the flow of information to be diverted to external servers, destroying all confidence in the electoral process.

The conclusion of the report is that “the manipulations and irregularities indicated do not allow for certainty about the margin of victory of the candidate Evo Morales over the candidate Carlos Mesa. On the contrary, based on the overwhelming evidence found, what can be affirmed is that there has been a series of intentional operations aimed at altering the will expressed at the polls.”

The report contains 96 pages of analysis and more than 500 pages of annexes. The annexes contain hundreds of documents that support and substantiate the audit findings, and support the analysis and conclusions of the report, including:

  • calligraphic analysis of more than 220 poll reports
  • documents signed by officials of the electoral body
  • reference to 37 indexed lists of citizens authorized to vote (the audit team has a copy of the complete lists, but will not publish them because it contains personal information of Bolivian citizens)
  • registration of the reception of the more than 200 complaints and communications with information received from citizens
  • 11 requests for information 

The final audit report presented today responds to a request from the Government of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, embodied in an agreement signed on October 30 to conduct "an analysis of electoral integrity of the elections." The work was carried out between November 1 and 9 by a team of 36 specialists and auditors of 18 nationalities including: electoral lawyers, statisticians, computer experts, specialists in documents, calligraphy, chain of custody and electoral organization.


Reference: E-109/19