Bolivian President Evo Morales will face a run-off vote for the primary time after failing to safe a fourth consecutive time period at an election.
Mr Morales had 45% of the vote to 38% of former President Carlos Mesa, partial outcomes from Sunday’s presidential vote confirmed.
Bolivia’s first indigenous chief has been in energy since 2006.
Mr Morales is a divisive determine, praised for his social insurance policies however criticised for defying time period limits.
If Mr Morales, already Latin America’s longest serving chief, wins within the run-off vote on 15 December, he will likely be in energy till 2025.
These had been probably the most unsure elections for Mr Morales, with many individuals indignant along with his insistence on working once more, BBC South America correspondent Katy Watson in La Paz experiences.
In a referendum in 2016, Bolivians rejected his suggestion to ditch the presidential time period limits.
However his Motion for Socialism (Mas) get together took the matter to the constitutional courtroom, which dominated within the president’s favour, permitting him to face for a fourth time period.
Bolivians have additionally criticised his environmental insurance policies, after forest fires that destroyed 4 million hectares of land in japanese Bolivia.
Many query whether or not a decree handed by the president, which quadrupled the quantity of land farmers are allowed to clear for agricultural manufacturing, contributed to the blazes.
Mr Morales, who has gained all his earlier phrases within the first spherical, wanted 40% with a 10-percentage-point lead over his nearest rival or greater than 50% of the votes to win outright.
What are the problems?
President Morales, 59, has been extensively praised for rising the Bolivian economic system and, on the similar time, slicing excessive poverty.
Many indigenous Bolivians proceed to again him, saying Mr Mesa – who’s working for the Civic Neighborhood (Comunidad Ciudadana) political alliance – embodies the white Bolivian elite and query his dedication to the poor.
Within the election marketing campaign, Mr Mesa argued that with oil and gasoline income declining, Bolivia wanted to be “extra wise and rational” in the way in which it spends its cash, particularly because the nation has a fiscal deficit of seven.eight% of GDP.
However his message of curbing spending has not confirmed standard with poor voters who’ve seen regular enhancements to their high quality of life beneath President Morales.