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Bolivia official count shows Arce with majority of vote, confirms rapid tally

Credit: REUTERS/UESLEI MARCELINO

Bolivia's official vote count showed socialist candidate Luis Arce with a majority of the vote with nearly 60% of ballots counted by late morning on Tuesday, backing up unofficial fast counts that had put him as the outright election winner.

By Marcelo Rochabrun

LA PAZ, Oct 20 (Reuters) - Bolivia's official vote count showed socialist candidate Luis Arce with a majority of the vote with nearly 60% of ballots counted by late morning on Tuesday, backing up unofficial fast counts that had put him as the outright election winner.

The slow official count showed Arce with 50.01% and runner-up centrist Carlos Mesa with around 32% of the vote, indicating a gap of around 18 percentage points, far larger than pollsters had predicted in the run-up to the Sunday ballot.

Arce's socialist MAS party has already claimed victory and Mesa conceded the loss on Monday.

(Reporting by Marcelo Rochabrun; Writing by Adam Jourdan)

((adam.jourdan@thomsonreuters.com; +54 1155446882; Reuters Messaging: adam.jourdan.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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