Colombia’s inspector general severely criticized a report by NGO Nuevo Arco Iris regarding electoral candidates with criminal backgrounds.
Inspector General Alejandro Ordoñez Maldonado said “[the one] who can disqualify is the Inspector General’s Office, not Corporacion Nuevo Arco Iris,” at the Ibero-American Congress on Electoral Law in Bogota.
He went on to say that the report “affects the transparency of the electoral processes,” as Nuevo Arco Iris “has held legal discussions with actors who have interests in this debate.”
Ordoñez Maldonaldo said “The lights went out at the Interior Ministry as reports which have no legal standing cannot be endorsed.”
Interior and Justice Minister German Vargas Lleras requested the assistance of Nuevo Arco Iris in July to identify political candidates with “legal inconsistencies.”
Vargas Lleras defended the report saying that Nuevo Arco Iris had performed field work “and simply is more input which was forwarded to intelligence agencies to verify the accuracy of the field information.”
The deal between the government and the NGO was criticized heavily by politicians loyal to former President Alvaro Uribe, who felt the NGO was biased because of ongoing clashes between Uribe and Nuevo Arco Iris president Leon Valencia.