Politics 08-11-2018

Colombian government asks Congress to give urgent procedure to projects against corruption

Colombia's Interior Ministry will ask Congress to urgently process several of the bills that seek to strengthen the fight against corruption, after opposition parties said the government sought to delay proposals for the Anticorruption Consultation.

"Today I hope that the Minister of the Interior (Nancy Patricia Gutiérrez) will urgently process many of these initiatives so that they can continue to advance quickly in the Congress of the Republic," said Colombian President Iván Duque, according to his office.

He also admitted that "it is true that some projects have had a slightly more difficult and tortuous path than initially expected."

However, he pointed out that his Government presented several projects against corruption in the country, and that after the clamor of the Colombians expressed in the anti-corruption consultation on August 26, "a technical panel was convened and worked to present initiatives to the Congress. of the Republic".

Duque said that the fight against corruption must also be reflected in the reorganization of several state entities, which were eaten away by patronage.

The popular anti-corruption referendum, through which Colombia's center-left party sought congressional approval of a series of laws against corrupt practices in the country, sank at the polls for lack of 468,922 votes, according to the state's National Registry of Civil Status. .

For the consultation to be approved, participation of at least one third of the electoral census was required (estimated at just over 36 million people qualified to vote), that is, 12,140,342 people, but in the end only 11,671 were counted. 420 votes.

This consultation sought to reduce the salary of legislators from 40 to 25 minimum wages (of more than $ 10,000 to $ 6,800), limit the election to the same state corporation to three periods and compel the public declaration of assets of the officials.

It also sought to demand the accountability of the work of elected officials, full compliance with prison sentences for corruption and prohibition of convicts obtaining public contracts, budgets with citizen participation and transparent rules for contracting with the State.

According to the promoters of the initiative, corruption means to Colombia annual losses of 50 billion pesos (18,400 million dollars), so it is urgent to attack it through laws.

However, despite the defeat at the polls, Duque held meetings with the promoters of the consultation, with whom he agreed to promote in the Congress the initiatives of this consultation and others of his own Government.


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