Members of the center Green Party on Thursday voted in favor for a merger with the left-leaning Progressives to jointly take part in Colombia’s 2014 elections.
Following the merger, the Green Party decided that its only representative in the House, Alfonso Prado, will leave the coalition and join the opposition for the rest of the legislative year, reported newspaper El Tiempo.
According to some media, the newly approved party still has no name or official board of directors. According to weekly Semana, the new party will be called Allianza Verde (Green Alliance).
Both the Green Party and the Progressives of Bogota mayor Gustavo Petro have traditionally failed to get electoral support in legislative elections, but have been highly successful in both mayoral and presidential elections; Green Party candidate Antanas Mockus reached the second round of the 2010 elections, while Petro won the 2011 Bogota elections ahead of Green Party candidate Enrique Peñalosa.
The fusion counted on the resistance of Peñalosa, who unsuccessfully teamed up with conservative former President Alvaro Uribe while racing Petro to the Bogota Mayor’s Office.
However, the prominent Green politician said to respect the vote and stay within the party while waiting for clarity on whether the party will follow his line or that of prominent Progressive politicians Petro and Antonio Navarro.
Colombia will take to the polls twice next year; in March, the South American country will hold congressional elections. In May, the country chooses its president for the term 2014-2018.