The new Cambio Radical Director, Carlos Fernando Galan, radically started his career with the party on Wednesday by withdrawing the endorsement of 161 Cambio Radical candidates because of their criminal records, reported El Tiempo news.
Galan replaced previous Cambio Radical Director German Varon on Wednesday after the ex-director resigned because of accusations that he did not revoke the endorsements of 238 candidates with legal problems, as demanded by the interior minister in a nation-wide sweep to cleanse parties of criminal candidates.
Galan announced his decision during a press conference where he spoke of his new responsibility to the party and the changes that he will be making to his candidacy in the current election race to become mayor of Bogota.
“I decided to start the (election) race within the Cambio Radical party by purifying their politics,” Galan said during the conference announcing his new appointment as the party’s director.
According to weekly Semana, Cambio Radical discovered that 91 of these candidates had convictions for crimes such as drug trafficking and illegal possession of weapons after an internal investigation. The party also found that 137 of their endorsed candidates are under investigation for drug trafficking, crimes against humanity, electoral crimes, conspiracy to commit crimes, and crimes against public administration.
“The party should be able to overcome this crisis,” emphasized Galan. The new director also commented that he had assumed his new position with Cambio Radical with humility, but with determination to improve the reputation of the party.
Despite declaring his intention to cleanse the party, one of Galan’s first acts as leader was the appointment of his predecessor German Varon as his new head of debating.