Weekly Report - 24 March 2022 (WR-22-12)

COLOMBIA: Boost and blow for Petro

Colombia’s political scene has been dominated this week by a controversy surrounding the senate elections staged on 13 March. Tensions were raised by discrepancies in the vote count. The left-wing Pacto Histórico coalition was the main beneficiary, picking up not far short of 400,000 additional votes, and ensuring that it will be the largest bloc in the 108-seat senate. President Iván Duque’s right-wing Centro Democrático (CD) was among the minority of parties to raise the spectre of electoral fraud and demand a full recount, but this was eventually ruled out by the national electoral registrar, Alexander Vega, in a big bonus for Gustavo Petro, the presidential candidate of Pacto Histórico. The findings of the first electoral survey carried out since the primary contests on 13 March will have come as a damp squib, however, suggesting that the presidential elections will be very far from a procession for Petro.

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