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Hugo Bánzer Suárez: 1926—: Politician Biography

Long Military Career, Ousted From Office, A New Era, Resigned Due To Poor Health

Ailing Bolivian president Hugo Bánzer Suárez resigned in August of 2001 after a long and sometimes controversial political career. A top military officer who engineered a 1971 coup, Bánzer led Bolivia through seven years of harsh military rule. Nearly twenty years after yet another military coup forced him from office—and after Bolivia had implemented sweeping democratic reforms—Bánzer was elected president. Over the next four years, he won praise for allowing Bolivia's progress toward a full democracy to flourish. Diagnosed with cancer at age 76, Bánzer resigned from office for the second time and his Vice President, Jorge Quiroga Ramírez, was named to succeed him. The handover continued Bolivia's relatively recent tradition in peaceful transitions of political power.

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