./letsencrypt-auto stopped working - The executable /root/.local/share/letsencrypt/bin/python2.7 is not functioning

I started receiving this weird error today when running ./letsencrypt-auto

ERROR: The executable /root/.local/share/letsencrypt/bin/python2.7 is not functioning
ERROR: It thinks sys.prefix is u'/usr' (should be u'/root/.local/share/letsencrypt')
ERROR: virtualenv is not compatible with this system or executable

I am running Centos 7, and python 2.7 was installed just fine with yum. I also already used letsencrypt auto on the system and installed some certs.

PS Just before this error occurred, I updated pip. Looks like this maybe a python issue as per http://stackoverflow.com/questions/5904319/problem-with-virtualenv-in-mac-os-x

I am also using anaconda and there seems to be a clash with the system installed python as per

[root@host ~]# which python
[root@host ~]# whereis python
python: /usr/bin/python /usr/bin/python2.7-config /usr/bin/python2.7 /usr/lib/python2.7 /usr/lib64/python2.7 /etc/python /usr/include/python2.7 /root/anaconda2/bin/python /root/anaconda2/bin/python2.7 /usr/share/man/man1/python.1.gz

I solved this issue by removing anaconda as the python executor like this

[root@host letsencrypt]# which python
[root@host letsencrypt]# echo $PATH
[root@host letsencrypt]# cd ..
[root@host ~]# echo $PATH > PATH BACKUP.txt
[root@host ~]# export PATH=/usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin:/root/bin
[root@host ~]# echo $PATH
[root@host ~]# which python

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