Uribe Cannot Run For Reelection in 2010, Early Reports Say–Breaking News
February 26, 2010 By Roque Planas
In a long-awaited decision, Colombia’s Constitutional Court looks like it will announce today that current President Álvaro Uribe will not be eligible for re-election this year.
At the time of writing, the English-language press had yet to file a story on the subject and the press conference had yet to take place. But early reports from the Colombian press indicate the measure to reform the constitution to remove the barrier to a second consecutive re-election did not pass.
Colombian weekly El Espectador reported at 11:55 a.m. that the decision would be seven to two against approving a referendum removing the barrier to Uribe’s second consecutive re-election. Spanish speakers can also consult the Web site of Colombian daily El Tiempo for continuing coverage. At the time of writing, El Tiempo had not confirmed the result, but reported that rumors circulating in the Justice Palace indicated the reform would be defeated by either eight to one or seven to two.
President Uribe has become a popular leader by taking a hard line against leftist guerrillas in Colombia. When Uribe was first elected in 2002, the Colombian constitution did not permit consecutive re-election, but a referendum reformed the law and Uribe was re-elected in 2006.
The Constitutional Court today reviewed the legality of a second referendum to remove the barrier to Uribe’s re-election this year. The referendum has been challenged on technical grounds.
The Court’s decision comes shortly after the Centro Nacional de Consultoría released poll results indicating that for the first time a majority of Colombians do not support Uribe’s re-election.
The Latin America News Dispatch plans to update information on the decision as it comes in and will post a link to the press conference when available.