Colombia’s Congress on Tuesday opened a formal investigation into former President Alvaro Uribe over the 2004 bribery of congressmen to vote in favor of a constitutional amendment allowing the former head of state to run for a second term in 2006.
Yidis Medina, who has already been convicted by the Supreme Court for accepting favors in exchange for a vote in support of the reelection, revealed in her testimony that she was “required” by Uribe to vote for a proposed amendment to the constitution in 2004 which would allow presidential to be re-elected two years later.
When asked by investigating lawmaker Yahir Acuña if “president Uribe sometimes expressly demanded that the draft reelection vote favorably,” Medina answered “yes”.
Acuña, who was at the beginning of October chosen to decide whether to bring charges against Uribe, added that a testimony from Uribe on November 21 must be heard before any decision whether to file an indictment can be made.
According to notes signed by Acuña published by newspaper El Tiempo, “the House of Representatives will seek to establish whether they can make way for the Senate to evaluate whether the complaint moves to the Supreme Court, the place where, legally, records of evidence should be formalized for a real criminal investigation.”
The bribery allegations became popularly known as “Yidispolitica” after Medina’s conviction while previous investigations has already implicated several government officials, including the Interior Minister Sabas Pretelt de la Vega and the former Minister of Social Protection Diego Palacio.
Attention will now shift to November 21 when Uribe will appear before the Accusations Committee of the House to give his testimony.