The central figure in a conspiracy between President Ivan Duque‘s party and a drug trafficking organization to rig Colombia’s 2018 elections remained silent during an interrogation, W Radio reported Monday.
Maria Claudia Daza, the former personal assistant of ex-President Alvaro Uribe, refused to answer questions of the National Electoral Commission (CNE), one of the bodies investigating the conspiracy.
Daza conspired with a late money launderer to “move money under the table” presumably to buy votes for Duque ahead of the second round of the 2018 elections.
The conspiracy ended up on tape as the Democratic Center (CD) party’s mafia associate, Jose Guillermo Hernandez, was being wiretapped as part of a homicide investigation.
Hernandez won’t be able to testify as he was murdered in Brazil in 2019. Sources in the CNE told W Radio that Daza remained silent about the plot that spurred multiple investigations.
Uribe, the CD’s supreme leader and Duque’s political patron, is being investigated by the Supreme Court for allegedly ordering the election fraud.
Like Daza, Duque’s friend and former campaign manager, Luis Guillermo Echeverri, and the CD’s director, Nubia Stella, are also being investigated by both the prosecution and the CNE.
The president is being investigated by the House of Representatives’ Accusations Committee.
Whether any of these investigations will lead to anything is uncertain; the CNE is notoriously ineffective and politicized and the Accusations Committee finished no more than one investigation since it inception in 1991.
Prosecutor General Francisco Barbosa was a member of the campaign and has been friends since Duque since university.
Only the Supreme Court has a reputation of being independent but relies on prosecution investigators to gather evidence.
The lack of legal progress has not prevented the political damage caused by the election fraud plot to Duque, his far-right party and his patron, who is the suspect in multiple criminal investigations.