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Latino Daily News

Sunday June 27, 2010

Is Nicaraguan President Ortega Buying Votes to Stay in Office and Defy the Constitution?

The constitution of Nicaragua has barred any President from serving consecutive 5-year terms until now it appears.  Late last year former Sandinista guerrilla fighter Daniel Ortega petitioned the country’s Supreme Court to amend the constitution and allow him to run for office in 2011.  Not surprisingly to many the Sandinista laden court approved the measure. 

Nonetheless, President Ortega, a master of jungle and political survival is hedging his bets.  His critics and numerous lawmakers are alleging he is buying votes in the National Assembly who might have the final say on any constitutional amendment.  Of course, if that doesn’t work he is also accused of removing democratically elected opponents and critics. 

Many aren’t counting Ortega out yet.  In 1979 after a guerrilla war he was head of Nicaragua’s social state, then “elected” in ’84 as President, ousted in ’90 and reelected in 2007. 

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