HomeWorldTomorrow Colombia votes in the midst of opacities

Tomorrow Colombia votes in the midst of opacities

There are measures that open the route for the right to sing fraud

Tomorrow Colombia chooses between seven president and vice president formulas in elections marked by the most severe violence of the decade; as denounced by broad and varied sectors from the media to social movements and human rights defenders. But in the final stretch, the always questioned transparency of the voting system in that country took on a new look and it is the same people who have traditionally benefited from opacity who seem to be preparing to sing fraud if what appears to be an imminent victory for the left occurs. .

The Historical Pact (PH), a conflagration of progressive and leftist forces that support the candidacy of Gustavo Petro and Francia Márquez, is the favorite in the polls to reach the House of Nariño. The most optimistic predict that this will be achieved in the first round: the basis of the slogan "change in first" with which the PH campaign is promoted.

Then, with little more than half of the voting intentions for the PH, the saga is disputed by two candidates: the extreme right-wing former mayor of Medellín, Federico 'Fico' Gutiérrez, from Equipo por Colombia (EPC), and the millionaire businessman and former Mayor of Bucaramanga Rodolfo Hernández, of the Anticorruption Governors League (LGA).

The EPC was the second favorite from the beginning in the measurements and the extreme right that governs since August 7, 2002, when its maximum representative, Álvaro Uribe Vélez, came to power and continued for five uninterrupted presidential periods until our days. days with the outgoing Iván Duque, who did not run for re-election amid lower popularity.

Hernandez's LGA; Called by some the Venezuelan Donald Trump, he presents himself as an alternative right to that of Uribe whose atypical campaign, supported by virtual networks; with videos so popular that they reach up to three million views, matched those of Fico, this according to the most recent survey of the Latin American Strategic Center for Geopolitics that gives Hernández 20,4% and Fico 20,1%, or in that of the National Consulting Center (CNC), of Colombia, which places the former mayor of Medellin with 20,8% and the former mayor of Bucaramanga with 19,1% in voting intentions.

Rooster covered? An electoral analysis that is worth observing is the rise of Rodolfo Hernández, who seemed to be one more of the eight candidates at the beginning, which are now seven because Ingrid Betancourt declined her aspirations with Verde Oxígeno to support the septuagenarian in his campaign based, among other slogans, about the phrase “old but tasty”.

'The king of tiktok', as he calls himself, presents simple solutions, uses the argument of his managerial capacity based on his fortune, which he himself estimated at $100 million, and promises to fight corruption without referring to his embezzlement scandals when he commanded Bucaramanga.

Caricaturing opponents on his tiktok with 418.000 followers and 3,5 million 'likes', he speaks ill of Uribe and when Figo said that he did not rule out an alliance, he asked "what if I am going to win?"

Analysts point to the possibility that Hernández was always an 'outsider' of Uribismo given Duque's low popularity that prevented him from competing.

Convenient opacity. Elections in Colombia have been noted for their lack of transparency for decades. Twenty years after his first government, Uribe still faces accusations of vote buying. A month ago, on April 20, after a televised hearing of more than 28 hours, Judge Carmen Helena Ortiz denied the Attorney General's Office to file the case against Uribe, after in March 12 the prosecutor alleged absence of crime, but Judge 2021 of Knowledge of Bogotá declared that "it is clear... that there is a possible hypothesis about the materiality of the crime of bribery to the criminal action" and rejected "the request for preclusion of investigation for the crimes of bribery in criminal action and procedural fraud”.

The PH points out that this scourge is still a common practice and urged the "offensive against electoral mafias and vote buyers throughout the Caribbean region." Lawyers who support Petro created a channel to receive bribery complaints and posted billboards, especially in the poorest neighborhoods of the Colombian Caribbean, with the text: "Are they buying your vote?: Complaint", with telephone numbers and networks to demonstrate the crime, there are even songs that propose to the population to receive the money, but vote for Petro anyway.

But perhaps the most relevant verification of the danger of fraud was after the vote count of the parliamentary elections on March 13, when the PH denounced massive irregularities in the transmission of data; which forced an exhaustive review that ended up recognizing 390.152 more votes in favor of the PH and three seats were added to the Senate than those originally achieved and put the national registrar, Alexander Vega, in the eye of the hurricane.

Vega was questioned from both sides of the contest. They asked for his resignation and an international audit of the data transmission software for this Sunday in search of transparency. However, Vega continues at the head of the National Registry of Civil Status.

Missing two weeks for the elections the PH; main victim of the irregularities in March, warned that the inaction of the Colombian Attorney General's Office before the parliamentary elections could change at the last minute and the Duque government could dismiss Vega at the wrong time, which would postpone the elections and cause a crisis for which Petro he asked for calm. He pointed out that the right could start violent false flag demonstrations and Duque would thus justify suspending the elections, but that did not happen.

Petro's theory did not materialize, either because the plan was revealed on time or because he was misinformed. However, less than a week before the elections, the Registrar's Office made announcements that further overshadow the elections by not hiring the much-demanded international audit.

The CNE denounced that there is an item for the Ministry of Finance for 3.000 million pesos (about $754 million). To this is added the complaint that Migration Colombia prevented international observers invited by the CNE from boarding the plane that would take them to the country.

During a debate, even Fico himself pointed out the irregularities, now analysts warn that this convenient opacity could be used by the EPC to claim fraud when the ballots proclaim Petro the winner, either in the second round, although there are those who still say it would be in the first round.

The Historical Pact is emerging as a favorite. Petro campaign command

The country that Duke leaves

Against Iván Duque they protested, without measuring the danger of covid-19, millions in a society impoverished by decades of neglect to which the president imposed VAT on basic products.

After this there were 80 deaths and disappearances, dozens of mutilated, sexual violations and of all kinds by the Police, and the national and international press did not pay much attention.

But the destruction of the peace pact and the legacy of 44 massacres and 79 social leaders assassinated in five months of this year, plus false positives such as those in Putumayo on March 28 at the hands of the Army and the more than 78.900 confined in their localities or displaced from them by violence in 2022 calculated by the UN; To which we must add 207 who fled from Chocó last week; thus discouraging the vote among peasants and Afro-descendants, it leaves a bleak panorama of ungovernability for whoever wins this Sunday.

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