Colombian President Alvaro Uribe will not announce his 2010 aspirations
until after the referendum that will allow him to run for a third consecutive
term, Interior Minister Fabio Valencia said Thursday. However, the
referendum is not likely to be held before Uribe’s legal deadline to announce his candidacy.
Valencia told newspaper El Tiempo it would be absurd if Uribe announces a third presidential bid when he has not yet been constitutionally allowed to run for a third term.
Last week, Colombian lower house approved a bill calling for a referendum that would ask Colombians if they want to change the Constitution to allow Uribe to run for a third term.
However, Constitutional Court president Nilson Pinilla said to W Radio that the bill review will take at least five months, counting from the day the bill is officially received at the Constitutional Court. This would mean the referendum will not be approved until February, three months before the elections.
Uribe is legally obliged to announce he takes part in the elections before November 30.
Uribe has not said if he wants run for president in 2010 if the two-term limit is lifted.