Former President Alvaro Uribe on Thursday confirmed that he heads the Democratic Party’s list of candidates for next year’s congressional elections.
Uribe served as President between 2002 and 2010 as a member of the Party of the U. In 2012 however, Uribe and a group of political allies founded the Democratic Center party in order to contest the 2014 elections.
Speaking to Blu Radio, the former head of state revealed the names of a further nine candidates, which include Jose Obdulio Gaviria, Uribe’s former personal adviser currently under investigation for his involvement in “the wiretap scandal,” and Ana Mercedes Gomez, former publisher of Colombian newspaper El Colombiano, currently under investigation for her links to the AIS corruption scandal.
List of Candidates
María del Rosario Guerra (former Minister of Communications)
Paloma Valencia (Blu Radio Journalist)
Ana Mercedes Gomez (former Director of El Colombiano)
Duke Ivan Marquez (former official IDB)
Susana Correa Holguin (former candidate for Mayor of Cali)
Tania Vega (wife of Colonel Plazas Vega)
Jose Obdulio Gaviria (former presidential advisor)
Everth Bustamante (former Director of COLDEPORTES)
Alfredo Rangel (expert on defense)
According to newspaper El Espectador, sources close to the Democratic Center advised Uribe not to include Gaviria because of the criminal investigations pending against him.
But Uribe himself is in significant legal trouble as a result of alleged ties to paramilitary umbrella organization AUC. A Medellin court recently ordered Congress to charge the former president for “parapolitics,” something already investigated by the Prosecutor General’s Office and the Inspector General.
Uribe has categorically denied he had ties to the AUC and its blocs and has claimed he was the victim of “criminal revenge” and “political persecution.”
Elections to both chambers of Congress will be held on March 9 2014. The 102 member senate will be contested, as well as the 166 seats in the chamber of representatives.