The National Electoral Council announced Tuesday it will open an investigation into alleged irregularities in the financing of former agricultural minister and pre-presidential candidate Andres Felipe Arias’ election campaign.
Magistrate Joaquin Jose Vives said there is sufficient evidence to warrant opening a preliminary investigation, following allegations by Colombian journalist Daniel Coronell in newspaper Semana.
Coronell alleges that Arias is receiving election campaign funding from businesses that benefited from agricultural subsidies under the Agro Ingreso Seguro (AIS) scheme.
Arias is currently under investigation for corruption in the granting of agriculture subsidies under the AIS program. He and current Agricultural Minister Andres Fernandez allegedly granted government agricultural funds to certain companies and affluent Colombian families, when the scheme was intended to help poor farmers.
Vives will take the case before his peers at the Electoral Council to decide if the Coronell’s claims warrant further investigation.