The far-right party of Colombia’s President Ivan Duque said Tuesday that evidence it colluded with narcos to rig the 2018 elections that was released by journalists is part of a leftist conspiracy.
In a press release, the Democratic Center party said the latest scandal is an “offensive” against the government and former President Alvaro Uribe, the party’s leader and the president’s political patron.
People and organizations, mostly linked to the Colombian left, in recent months have been developing another organized, aggressive and persistent strategy against the government of President Ivan Duque, against Senator Alvaro Uribe and against the Democratic Center, with the support of journalists and media, national and international, which participate intensively in social networks.
The journalists who published the evidence of the party’s collusion with narcos in order to rig Duque’s election in 2018 fiercely rejected the claim was an implicit death threat.
The Democratic Center put a tombstone on us journalists from La Nueva Prensa who are denouncing with evidence how Uribe and Duque bought the presidency with drug trafficking money.
Journalist Gonzalo Guillen
The Democratic Center puts out a statement saying that opposition journalists are organized thugs and are asking all their troops to take action. This is more dangerous than Uribe, from his horse, would tell me he was going to kill me.
Journalist and attorney Daniel Mendoza
Journalists Gonzalo Guillen and Daniel Mendoza warned that party activists are “filling social media” with fake extracts transcripts in order to discredit the veracity of the transcripts and audio proving the party’s ties to drug traffickers.
The party teamed up with government officials last year to create a “sweatshop” of “Uribista” influencers and fanatics to promote the dissemination of disinformation and smear journalists who criticized the government or Uribe.
Guillen, Mendoza and investigative journalist Julian Martinez all reported they have been shadowed since revealing the evidence the party coordinated vote-buying in northern Colombia with the drug trafficking organization of Marquitos Figueroa.
The reports triggered the Supreme Court to open another investigation into Uribe, a former Medellin Cartel associate.
Congress and the prosecution are investigating the alleged involvement of Duque and other party officials while the National Electoral Council is investigating the party’s 2018 campaign.