Petro, a former guerrilla, wins Colombian presidential election Central and South American Left Wind Synthesis

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Colombia’s first left-wing government Former mayor of Bogota who worked for rebel groups
After Mexico, Argentina, Peru, and Chile, left-wing governments in Colombia

Colombia was the first country in South America to have a left-leaning government.

In the runoff of the Colombian presidential election held on the 19th (local time), Gustavo Petro (62), the left-leaning coalition ‘historical treaty’ candidate, received 50.4% of the vote (99.99% of the votes counted).

Rodolfo Hernandez, a 77-year-old entrepreneur from the rival ‘Anti-Corruption Rulers League’, received 47.3% of the vote.

In the first round of voting on the 29th of last month, Petro took first and second places with 40% and Hernandez with 28%, respectively, and the final winner was decided in the final vote of the day.

After the first round of voting, it was difficult to predict the outcome until the final count as the Conservative vote was concentrated on Hernandez.

In fact, at the beginning of the counting, Hernandez was slightly ahead, but as the counting progressed, he leaned towards Petro, and as the counting rate exceeded 90%, major Colombian media reported that Petro was likely to win one after another.

After the media reported the victory, Petro congratulated him on Twitter, saying, “Today is the day to celebrate the first victory of the Colombian people.”

He later stood in front of his supporters and said, “From today, Colombia will change.

It’s a different Colombia,” he vowed to make a ‘real change’.

Petro will succeed incumbent President Ivan Duque in August and lead Colombia for four years.

He is the first left-leaning president in Colombia’s history.

The president-elect was a member of the left-wing guerrilla group ‘M-19’ when he was young, and is an incumbent senator who served as mayor of Bogota.

This is the third presidential challenge, and in the first challenge in 2010, it got 9% and finished fourth, and reached the final in the previous election in 2018.

In the final, he lost to incumbent President Ivan Duque by 12 percentage points.

Petro, a former guerrilla, wins Colombian presidential election  Latin America 'Left Wind' (Comprehensive)

In this presidential election, the third challenge, Petro delved into the aspirations of voters for change by promising pension reforms, shrinking the coal and oil industries, and raising the wealthy.

In Colombia, with the poverty rate of 40%, the unemployment rate of 11%, and the increasing number of violent crimes, public opinion is higher than ever that the current situation needs to be changed.

Candidate Hernandez, a former millionaire entrepreneur who claimed to be anti-establishment and called the ‘Trump of Colombia’, also made a surprise in the first round of voting by stating that eradication of corruption was a key pledge, but the storm did not lead to the final.

Candidate Hernandez gave in, saying, “I accept the result” through a video message at the end of the counting.

Petro’s victory has clearly tilted the political landscape of Latin America to the left.

Since the end of 2018, governments have changed from right to left in Mexico, Argentina, Peru, and Chile one after another.

As left-leaning candidates are strong in the Brazilian presidential election in October, there is a possibility that left-leaning governments will be inaugurated for the first time in six countries with the largest economies in Latin America.

Petro’s running mate, environmental and human rights activist Francia Marquez, became Colombia’s first black female vice president.

Petro, a former guerrilla, wins Colombian presidential election  Latin America 'Left Wind' (Comprehensive)

/yunhap news

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