Posted by Christan Leonard on Mar 27, 2012 Leave a comment

Colombia’s land restitution director resigns

Juan Manuel Ospina

The director of the Colombian Rural Development Institute, the body in charge of restoring land to the country’s huge displaced population, resigned Tuesday.

Juan Manuel Ospina allegedly left his post due to irreconciliable differences with his superior, Agriculture Minister Juan Camilo Restrepo.

The land restitution program has been a central pillar of President Juan Manuel Santos’ administration. $222.8 milloin is being invested in the preparatory stages of the program, which aims to restore millions of acres to its rightful owners. The last UN estimate of the number of internally displaced people in Colombia was 3.67 million — the highest rate in the world.

It is unclear how Ospina’s resignation will affect the program.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the government had not announced any potential candidates to fill the post.