The mayor of the Bolivian town of Vinto, near Cochabamba, was assaulted and humiliated by a mob of angry protesters who blame her for the death of two protesters in neighboring Cochabamba, The Daily Mail reported.
One of the victims, a 20-year old student, succumbed to injuries sustained during clashes between pro-government and anti-government demonstrators in Cochabamba.
Protesters blocking the bridge to Vinto on Wednesday marched to the city hall after rumours spread that two people had died in protests in the neighboring city. The ferocious mob dragged the mayor, Patricia Arce of the governing MAS party, out of the hall, spray painted her red and chopped off her hair while chanting “Murderess! Murderess!,” according to The Daily Mail.
Bolivia mayor Patricia Arce has hair forcibly cut, dragged in the streets, office set on fire by crowd of protesters accusing her of ferrying President Evo Morales' supporters to break a blockade they had set up & reported deaths, one of which was later confirmed. pic.twitter.com/xNRJWRCqE3— The African Voice (@teddyeugene) November 7, 2019
The woman was forced on her knees to sign a resignation letter before being paraded across town for hours. Following four hours of humiliation, Arce was driven away by regional police, the report says.
In the meantime, protesters set fire to the town hall.
Protests in Bolivia are fueled by presidential candidate Carlos Mesa who has called the vote count in the recent presidential election a ‘fraud’. Evo Morales of MAS won the election with a reported 10 percent advantage over Mesa, which allowed him to become president without a second round of elections.
Following reports of the protester’s deaths, Evo Morales tweeted his “deep regret” over the incidents, describing the dead students as “an innocent victim of violence promoted by political groups that encourage racial hatred among Bolivian brothers.”