Colombia’s Attorney General Friday accused Social Welfare Minister
Diego Palacio of frustrating the investigation into his involvement in
the bribery of Yidis Medina. Former Justice and Interior Minister Sabas
Pretelt de la Vegais accused of having recommended a Congressman for public functions as part of the bribe.
According to the Attorney General’s Office, the minister illegally disclosed procedural information in a press conference wherein he and President Álvaro Uribe accused the convicted congresswoman of pressuring the President’s son Tómas.
The Minister also allegedly used the department secretary and communications chief to work for the Minister’s self defense, something which is not part of the ministry’s personnel work.
Pretelt de la Vega, current ambassador to Rome, is accused of having recommended former Congressman Teodolindo Avedaño — currently awaiting trial for the bribery — for government jobs so as to benefit the then pending re-election vote in Congress.
Yidis Medina has already been convicted for bribery after having admitted changing her vote in favor of the 2006 re-election of Uribe. Avedaño surprisingly never showed up for the vote, even though he had been opposed to it before. The vote was crucial to enforce a constitutional change to allow Uribe to be re-elected.