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Court annuls election of the president of the Colombian Senate, key to Petro reforms

The Council of State, the highest court for administrative litigation, annulled this Thursday the election – due to double militancy – of the president of the Senate of Colombia, Roy Barreraskey in managing the president’s ambitious reforms Gustavo Petro.

Barreras was a congressman for the party of the u (center-right) between 2018 and 2022, and re-elected in March 2022 as a candidate for the Historical Pactthe leftist coalition led by Petro.

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According to the court, the politician failed to comply in “their duty to resign their seat 12 months before the date of registration for congressional elections period 2022-2026″, for which reason he violated the electoral norms and incurred double militancy.

In a message on Twitter, Barreras complied with his immediate expulsion from Congress: “Judgments of justice are respected even if they seem unfair“, wrote.

He also anticipated that he will file a legal appeal before the Council of State to “restore the rightof their constituents.

Friend of power and of the right-wing elites who have governed in Colombia for several decades, Barreras was a Petro bishop before he became president.

As president of the Senate (upper house), supported most of the legal reforms that the government has presented in nine months, especially a tax reform to tighten taxes on the richest.

Experts point out that his role was key to reaching consensus between the different parties that support Petro and those that do not.

On Wednesday night, the president himself thanked Barreras on Twitter for “its decisive role in the approval of the Development plan”, the government roadmap until 2026.

Thus, the first leftist president of Colombia adds a new setback in his relationship with the legislature.

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Last week Petro broke relations with three traditional parties that supported him just after he took office on August 7, but later opposed his reforms.

Faced with the difficulty of making the promises he made to his constituents a reality, the president replaced seven of his ministers, including that of Tax authorities.

On May 1 from a balcony of the presidential Narino Palace anticipated to Congress the possibility of a “revolution” if he does not approve his proposals and asked his voters to protest in the streets.

Source: Elcomercio

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