Colombian President Álvaro Uribe did not receive any paramilitary
support in his 2002 campaign, his former campaign manager said
Wednesday after former paramilitary leader ‘Don Berna’ said his AUC had
supported Uribe’s candidacy.
“I never had any relation with Don Berna, or Popeye or Pencil or Pen or with any name that weird,” former campaign manager Fabio Echeverri told Caracol Radio.
The defense of ‘Don Berna’, who was convicted to 31 years in U.S. prison Wednesday, had said the paramilitaries had supported the campaign of the current president.
“Murillo’s defense said that the judge should take into consideration
that Murillo and the AUC contributed to the presidential campaign with
large quantities of money and supported the presidential aspirations of
Álvaro Uribe,” victims rights activist Ivan Cepeda, who had attended
the trial, told reporters.
According to Echeverri, not one authority and none of the media ever had doubts about the transparency of the campaign for the 2002 presidency.
The former campaign manager said to have documents showing “who gave money, how much they gave, how they gave” and never received any cheques or handled more than one bank account for the campaign.
Echeverri added that the campaign team had even returned money when it was considered suspicious.