Photo: Ex-President Alvaro Uribe
Former President Alvaro Uribe presented Monday his candidacy for the Senate in Colombia’s March 2014 legislative elections.
Uribe, who governed from 2002-2010, announced his intention of returning to Congress - he was a senator in the 1990s - to a press conference at his residence in Rionegro, near the northwestern city of Medellin.
The ex-president, who over the past three years has been in strong opposition to President Juan Manuel Santos, his former minister of defense, justified his decision on grounds that the country’s situation demands that his party get back on “the path to inspiring confidence.”
“In a nation that has been so generous to me, I feel an obligation to continue in politics as long as I have the energy,” said Uribe, who cannot run for president again due to term limits.
Uribe said that throughout the week he will reveal who will make up the congressional list that he will head.
Leaders of his rightist Democratic Center movement will also collect signatures so they can present voter lists and consolidate themselves as a political party.
Uribe boiled down his proposals into five points: democratic security, investor confidence, social cohesion, popular dialogue, and a state that is austere in its spending and expansive in meeting its social obligations.
Uribe and his team also said that negotiations with illegal armed groups “must accept the obligations and benefits of complying with the law,” a reference to his criticism of the current government’s conversations in Cuba with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC.