Former President of Colombia and Senator-elect Alvaro Uribe has refused to provide evidence reinforcing the public criminal allegations he made against the acting president last week.
|Colombia’s 2014 elections|
According to local media, Uribe failed to answer a summons issued by the Prosecutor General’s Office to appear at 8AM Monday and testify or provide additional evidence regarding his claims that President Juan Manuel Santos received some $2 million in alleged drug money in 2012 to cover debts from his 2010 campaign.
The former head of state said that the prosecutor general’s request showed “animosity, bias, and lack of guarantees […] of confidentiality,” asserting that the judicial body was not acting impartially.
Instead, Uribe plans to take his information regarding Santos’ first presidential bid to the right-wing Inspector General’s Office, according to the El Espectador newspaper.
Last Thursday, Uribe accused Santos Thursday of having received the money through Juan Jose (JJ) Rendon, the president’s now-former political strategist, currently in legal trouble for allegedly accepting $12 million to negotiate some form of demobilization on behalf of several of Colombia’s leading drug lords.
The Venezuelan political spin doctor, who has helped both Santos and Uribe win elections, is said to have agreed to help infamous drug traffickers such as Javier Antonio Calle, alias “Comba,” Diego Rastrojo, and Loco Barrera, present a proposal that sought to end a reported 90% of the narco-trafficking operations in Colombia. While the government ultimately decided to pursue the drug lords rather than negotiate, Rendon allegedly received his payment regardless, for having introduced the proposal to the president.
Santos, meanwhile, is said to have used $2 million in drug money to cover up debts accrued from his 2010 presidential campaign, which was allegedly running over-budget at the time.
On Sunday, the Prosecutor General’s Office called on Uribe to present evidence to substantiate his accusations, which come in the midst of a heated presidential election contest between Santos and Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, the candidate from Uribe’s Democratic Center (Centro Democratico) party.
Not only did Uribe neglect the summons, the former president also asked that Prosecutor General Eduardo Montealegre recuse himself from any investigation that could result from the undisclosed evidence he supposedly has at his disposal.
With Colombia’s presidential elections less than three weeks away, President Santos still remains the leader in the polls, and has yet to feel any acute effects of the emerging scandal surrounding Rendon and his alleged bribe.
- Comunicado De Prensa 042 (Prosecutor General’s Office)
- Uribe pide que Fiscal y Vicefiscal se declaren impedidos para investigar caso J.J. Rendón (El Espectador)
- Uribe no se presentó a fiscal porque no puede probar denuncia: Santos (El Tiempo)