The referendum needed for Colombian President Alvaro Uribe to run for a third term has lost the approval of the majority of Colombians, a poll published on Monday shows.
According to pollster Datexco, 47% of Colombians interviewed say they do not want a referendum, while 41% say they do.
Of those interviewed, 47.5% say they will take part in the referendum if the Constitutional Court allows it, while 43.7% say they will not.
“The majority of the people prefer there not to be a referendum, but if the Constitutional Court approves it, the majority will vote,” Cesar Valderrama, general manager of Datexco, told newspaper El Tiempo.
The poll, held this weekend, shows that, even though Uribe remains the most popular candidate if he decides and is allowed to run, he can no longer count on a first round victory. The pollster reports that 46% of the Colombians said they would vote for the current president, which is a significant decrease compared to previous polls where Uribe could count on the support of more than 70% of Colombians.
Supporters of Uribe are trying to use the referendum to force a constitutional change that will allow Uribe to run for a third term. The chances of this referendum being successfully held is becoming smaller, as the elections are in May and the Constitutional Court still has not ruled on whether it will allow the popular vote to be held.