Plurinational State Day is a public holiday in Bolivia observed every 22 January. It was instituted in 2010, upon the official change of Bolivia’s name to “The Plurinational State of Bolivia”.
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This name-change was done in accordance with the new 2009 constitution and in order to recognise the multiple ethnic groups that make up Bolivia’s population. The effort to make these changes was led by the first Bolivian president of Native American descent, Evo Morales.
President Morales hailed from a poor Aymara family, but he rose in politics by heading up a trade union for local coca producers. He then founded a new political party to fight for recognition of all of his country’s ethnic groups, and then later, another party that did the same but also sought a more socialistic form of government. After his election as president in 2005, Morales was able to gradually achieve many of his dreams.
Oddly, 22 January is not the date when Bolivia officially became a “plurinational state”, but the date of the inauguration of president Evo Morales. However, as he was the main leader fighting for these changes, 22 January was chosen as the day to remember the accomplishment and celebrate the ethnic diversity of Bolivia.