Colombia’s ex-President Alvaro Uribe is planning to form and lead a new political party with the hope of winning more than a third of the seats in the Senate in the 2014 congressional elections, Caracol Radio reported Thursday.
According to the radio station, Uribe plans to abandon the U Party, which has found itself in the middle of increasing tensions between the former President and his successor, President Juan Manuel Santos.
In an interview with W Radio, Senator Roy Barreras,co-director of the U Party discarded the report as “media speculation,” but admitted that if Uribe would to lead a new political movement “he would get a lot of votes.”
According to Barreras, the rumors about Uribe’s possible departure from the U Party is increasingly “fragmenting” his party.
Liberal Party director Simon Gaviria told Caracol a possible split between Uribe-loyalists and Santos-loyalists within the U Party would hardly affect the governing coalition. “It is not the problem of the Liberal Party, which continues to be loyal to Santos and the coalition,” the Liberal said.
Conservative Party Chairman Efrain Cepeda Sarabia warned that Uribe’s departure from the U Party to lead a new political movement would weaken conservatism in the country.
Uribe has increasingly expressed his discomfort with the policies of Santos, who — after winning the 2010 elections amid promises to continue Uribe’s policies — increasingly moved away from Uribe’s conservative policies and aligned with some of the former president’s political enemies.