Former President Alvaro Uribe holds a series of meetings with political allies that are thought to be the first steps in his return to the Colombian political arena.
According to newspaper El Tiempo, Uribe met for lunch with Conservative Party members. Later in the afternoon, the former head of state met with members of President Juan Manuel Santos’ Partido de la U in the home of the Congress president.
Partido de la U senator Plinio Olano, the only one to speak on the record about the private meeting, told Caracol Radio that in January Uribe will actively get involved in the upcoming local and departmental elections.
Uribe announced his involvement in the 2011 elections two weeks ago, without specifying which party or candidates he will be endorsing.
“It was clear that Uribe will not impose candidates, but that in regions where alliances are convenient, the candidates to be supported will be of the parties of the government’s coalition,” Olano told Caracol.
Despite pressure from prominent members of la U to assume leadership of the party, Uribe said he would endorse all coalition parties in the coming year and did not speak out about heading the government’s main coalition party.
According to Olano, the former president also discussed on number of bills currently pending in Congress regarding mining royalties and the return of land to victims of the country’s violent conflict.
Uribe left Colombian politics in August, following a failed attempt by followers to change the constitution to allow the controversial politician a third consecutive term in office.