Former Bolivia president Evo Morales has announced that ex-Supreme Court justice Eugenio Raúl Zaffaroni and lawyer Raúl Gustavo Ferreyra will serve as his legal advisors while he remains in exile in Buenos Aires.
The Movement for Socialism (MAS) leader described the two legal heavyweights as “two great lawyers, not only in Argentina and Latin America but across the world.” He added that they were “always on the side of truth and justice.”
Morales, who resigned the Bolivian presidency in October after a disputed election result, said he would retain the counsel of both constitutional experts.
Both, speaking at a press conference this week, said they would be willing to act as defence lawyers for the former president if needed. Morales face charges of sedition and funding terrorism in his homeland, while the interim government that replaced him in power in La Paz has accused the indigenous leader of “usurping [the] functions” of public office.
Morales also revealed that he had received legal advice from the famed Spanish judge Baltasar Garzón.
Zaffaroni, a judge sitting on the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR), said he would excuse himself from any case involving that jurisdiction.
Earlier in the week, Morales said that the presidential candidate for his Movement for Socialism (MAS) party in next year’s Bolivian elections would be named January 19. He has previously said MAS leaders would hold a summit at an as-yet unidentified location on the ArgentineBolivian border to make the decision.
The 60-year-old, who spent almost 14 years in power, resigned the presidency after two weeks of protests, following election results that were questioned by the opposition and the Organisation of American States (OAS). The Police and Armed Forces withdrew their support.
Conservative leader Jeanine Añez subsequently took office as the nation’s interim leader and said Bolivia would hold new elections, though no date has yet been since. She has said Morales will be banned from running.
Recently, the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Bolivia announced that “for logistical reasons” there will be no registration of new overseas voters for the upcoming elections. That means, in essence, that Morales would have to go to Bolivia to vote. He has yet to confirm whether he will do so or not.
Among the likely presidential candidates are MAS leaders Andronico Rodríguez (seen as Morales’ political heir), former foreign ministers Diego Pary and David Choquehuanca and execonomy minister Luis Arce. Likely opponents include ex-president Carlos Mesa and Luis Fernando Camacho and Marco Antonio Pumari, both seen as figures who were influential in pushing for Morales’ resignation.