A Colombian senator has proposed changing the constitution to allow demobilized paramilitaries and guerrillas to stand for election or hold public office.
Colombian media reported Senator Roy Barreras has received the backing of the government of President Santos in his plan to modify article 122 of the Political Constitution, which states anyone convicted of belonging to, promoting or financing illegal armed groups or of crimes against humanity or drug trafficking cannot stand for public office.
If the proposal passes then article 122 would not apply to anyone who demobilizes through a government peace process.
The move is part of a proposed piece of legislation aimed at completely reforming the widely discredited Justice and Peace law of 2006 that aimed to demobilize the paramilitary group the AUC.
Barreras said, “This legislation, without a doubt, will overcome the failures of the Justice and Peace law that has shown its weaknesses that need to be corrected.”
The senator added that he believed the legislation would help “foment massive demobilizations and bring a new dawn of peace.”