A political party founded by former President Alvaro Uribe has revealed a list of 31 candidates for the 2014 congressional elections, reported newspaper El Espectador on Tuesday.
Uribe served as President between 2002 and 2010 as a member of the Party of the U. In 2012 however, Uribe and a group of political allies founded the Democratic Center party in order to contest the 2014 elections.
According to El Espectador, the Democratic Center has been recruiting candidates since the party launched their national tour on March 31, initially enrolling approximately 300 people.
Alejandro Arbelaez, director of the Democratic Center said that candidates had to pass through four filters.
The legal filter, i.e the candidates have no outstanding legal issues preventing them from being elected to Congress, the ethical filter, the ideological filter, i.e the candidates share Uribe’s ideological views and finally the strategic filter, i.e a look to see which candidates are better suited to the Senate and which are more suited to the House.
The party’s self-imposed legal filter failed to recognize criminal investigations pending against Uribe and his adviser Jose Obdulio Gavira, both investigated for the illegal wiretapping of political opponents, supreme court justices, journalists and human rights organizations, and Ana Mercedes Gomez, who is investigated for illegally receiving agriculture benefits.
According to El Espectador, when asked if Uribe would be on the list, Arbelaez replied “he will be at the top of the list. It is not true that after being elected he will not serve. He knows that Colombia needs his leadership.”
List of candidates for the Senate
- Alvaro Uribe (former president)
- Jose Obdulio Gaviria (Uribe’s personal adviser)
- Jorge Fernando Perdomo (former deputy of Huila)
- Carlos Julio Gonzalez (former Senator)
- Maria del Rosario Guerra (former minister of communications)
- Carlos Moreno de Caro (former Senator and ambassador to South Africa)
- Daniel Cabrales (former candidate for mayor of Monteria, Cordoba)
- Luis Fernando Caicedo (former candidate for governor of Tolima)
- Martha Pinto De Hart (former minister of communications)
- Ana Mercedes Gomez (former director of ‘El Colombiano’)
- María Fernanda Cabal (wife of the President of the national farmers federation)
- Paola Holguin (coordinator of the Democratic Center in Antioquia)
- Alfredo Rangel (Director of the security and democracy foundation)
- Everth Bustamante (former director of COLDEPORTES)
- Nancy Patricia Gutierrez (former Senate president)
- Andres Julian Rendon (former secretary of the government of Antioquia)
- Honorio Miguel Hernandez (former director of ESAP)
- Carlos Lemus Pedraza (retired army general)
- Catalina Acosta (former model from Cundinamarca)
- Oscar Darío Perez (former Senator of Antioquia)
- Fernanda Salcedo
- Jaime Amin (former candidate for governor of Atlantico)
- Luis Lorduy (consultant)
- Rafael Nieto Loaiza (former minister of justice)
List of candidates for the House
- Roberto Castro Polanía
- Jaime Parra Cubides
- Tatiana Cabello
- Rafael Guarin
- Saul Hernandez
- Carlos Ignacio Cuervo
Elections to both chambers of Congress will be held on March 9 2014. The 102 member senate will be contested, as well as the 166 seats in the chamber of representatives.