Polemic billboards, sponsored by former vice president and potential 2014 presidential candidate, Francisco Santos, ask viewers to guess who killed more cops, deceased drug lord Pablo Escobar or FARC leader Ivan Marquez.
One billboard located in Medellin recently suffered a bombardment of tomatoes from an angry group of citizens. The incident was minor, yet it reflects a larger issue of debate in Colombia.
Despite a pending order from the National Electoral Council to take the billboards down, Santos said he had no intention of doing so.
“Don’t come to me and say that we are using the pain of the victims,” he said. “No, I know and I have worked with the victims,” referring to his past work for the Pais Libre foundation that defends the rights of kidnapping victims and their families.
“We want peace without impunity,” reads the billboard, which also includes the name of the vice president under Alvaro Uribe, who is vocally critical of the peace talks in Havana.
It seems that Santos, who is one of the presidential hopefuls in 2014 for the Puro Centro Democratico party, also intends to turn public will against the dialogue.
“They want to conceal the reality: the FARC [committed] crimes identical to [those of] Pablo Escobar,” Uribe said regarding the investigation by the National Electoral Council.
In the past, Santos has been accused of dealing with a paramilitary group in the capital Bogota. The allegations implicated his involvement in the parapolitics scandal that plagued Uribe’s presidency.
- A tomate fueron atacadas las polemicas valles de Francisco Santos (El Espectador)
- No vamos a bajar las vallas: Francisco Santos (Caracol Radio)
- En defensa de Francisco Santos, Uribe compara a las Farc con Pablo Escobar (El Espectador)