Colombia’s Supreme Court called on 86 House Representatives to
testify about their allegedly illegal approval of a referendum seeking
the re-election of President Alvaro Uribe. The court wants to know if
there is enough reason to start a criminal investigation against the
The Congressmen were sued by one of their opposition colleagues for prevarication in January. Polo Democratico Representative German Navas Talero accuses his fellow Members of the House of having approved the second referendum while the first referendum had not yet been certified by the Registry.
The Registry has already informally stated the financing of this referendum did not meet the legal standards, because some companies gave more money than legally allowed. The National Electoral Council is still officially investigating this.
Senator Alirio Villamizar of the governing Conservative Party told Caracol Radio the government offered to pay the defense attorneys of the congressmen if the Court decides to officially accuse the lawmakers of prevarication.
The referendum is the only way for Uribe to be re-elected again and its passing through Congress has been controversial along the way.
An commission of Representatives and Senators has yet to approve the bill, after which the constitutional court must investigate the constitutionality of it. Many Congressmen and analysts say the referendum will not make it on time.