Gustavo Petro: Leftist ex-rebel fighter wins Colombia’s presidential election | World Information

Colombia has elected former guerrilla fighter Gustavo Petro as its first left-wing president.

The previous member of the M-19 guerrilla motion narrowly defeated actual property millionaire Rodolfo Hernandez, vowing to enact profound social and financial change.

Mr Petro, a former mayor of capital Bogota and present senator, promised to struggle inequality with free college training, pension reforms and excessive taxes on unproductive land.

He received 50.4% of the votes to Mr Hernandez’s 47.3%, with virtually all ballots counted, in response to outcomes launched by election authorities.

Mr Hernandez had promised to shrink authorities and to finance social programmes by stopping corruption.

Mr Petro’s working mate, Francia Márquez, turned the primary black girl to be elected vp within the nation.

The 40-year-old is a single mom, former housekeeper and lawyer whose opposition to unlawful mining resulted in threats and a grenade assault in 2019.

The election was held amid a backdrop of rising inequality, inflation and violence – components that led voters within the first spherical final month to punish long-governing centrist and right-leaning politicians and decide two outsiders for the run-off contest.

Greater than 42% of the nation’s inhabitants lives in poverty, in response to the World Financial institution.

1000’s rejoice within the streets

Mr Petro’s victory marks the tip of the left’s stigmatisation in Latin America’s third most populous nation on account of perceived associations with Colombia’s half century of armed battle.

The 62-year-old was as soon as a insurgent with the now-defunct M-19 motion and was granted amnesty after being jailed for his involvement with the group.

He mentioned he was tortured throughout his imprisonment.

Mr Petro’s win has involved some traders on account of insurance policies that embrace a ban on new oil merchandise – though he has pledged to honour current contracts.

“From at the moment Colombia modifications; Colombia is completely different,” Mr Petro instructed cheering supporters in a live performance enviornment in Bogota. “Change consists exactly in abandoning sectarianism.”

Learn extra: Why are so many environmental activists being killed in Colombia?

1000’s of individuals had been seen celebrating within the metropolis’s streets, with some dancing close to its largest polling place below sporadic rain.

Mr Petro’s triumph, which follows two unsuccessful makes an attempt on the presidency, provides Colombia to an inventory of Latin American nations which have elected progressives lately.


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