Colombia “respects” the decision of the Venezuelan people to allow
President Hugo Chávez to be re-elected indefinitely, Colombian Interior
and Justice Minister Fabio Valencia Cossio said Monday.
According to newspaper El Nacional, the Minister did not know if Colombian President Álvaro Uribe — currently visiting Brazil — had called Chávez to congratulate him.
“Usually befriended countries congratulate each other in Democratic processes like this one (…) This is the democratic will of the Venezuelan people. You should respect this and wish the President and people of Venezuela the best. If they (the Venezuelans) think the Presidential institution should not have a limited term and can re-elect a person indefinitely, as the will of the Venezuelan people, this should be respected,” the Minister was quoted by the newspaper.
Venezuela decided in a referendum Thursday to change the constitution allowing its President to be re-elected indefinitely. The Venezuelan “yes” to the referendum is a victory for the Venezuelan Presidency, who was serving his last possible term under the current constitution.