“If Duque turns Green and pro-peace, I am the first to become Duchist”: Juan Manuel Santos

Juan Manuel Santos (Colprensa-Diego Pineda)

One of the aspects that the opposition to the president has most questioned Ivan Duque During his little more than three years in office, it is the implementation of the Final Peace Agreement, although before the UN he has affirmed that he has executed them even more than who signed them with the defunct FARC, the former president. Juan Manuel Santos.

Well, the implementation of the agreements was one of the points that Santos touched on in conversation with the journalist Maria Jimena Duzán on Thoroughly, a podcast of Spotify Studios in Colombia, in which he also questioned Duque’s support for the fracking, rejected the politicization of the public force and explained why some businessmen fear peace. Here are some of the key points of the interview that can be heard starting at 5 pm on November 22:

Duque “got on” the peace bus, but without implementing it

One of the phrases to highlight from Santos in the interview with Duzán is: “It gives me immense satisfaction that Duque is champion in the implementation of the peace accords”, with which, with sarcasm, he questions the current Colombian head of state for showing his chest on this issue when, in his opinion, he let the first point die with the FARC: the Comprehensive Rural Reform.

The person who won the Nobel Peace Prize also questioned that Duque was referring to his government’s commitment to the environment, although his speech gave rise to the practice. “It seems wonderful to me that Duque now comes out to say that he is green and that he is not promoting the fracking. But from said to fact there is a long way (…) ”, he asserted.

For Santos, there were those who regretted not having supported the agreements

For the former president of Colombia between 2010 and 2019, it is gratifying to see how those who at the time opposed the agreements signed in Havana, today express regret for the decision, especially when promoting the ‘No’ in the plebiscite, such is the case of some churches.

“I am glad that many of those who wanted to derail the peace train have now got on it.”

In agreement with Santos, he met with the bishops and pastors who led the ‘No’: they told me that they were very sorry for what they had done (…). The Church radically changed when faced with the implementation of the Final Peace Agreement: it realized that it is what the country needs, ”Santos said.

Some businessmen financed paramilitarism

Santos supported María Jimena Duzán that if part of the business community did not support the agreements, it was because of their links with paramilitarism, although he stated that it is not too late to reconsider building peace in a country that is urgent for it.

“The main reason many businessmen are nervous about the agreement is the Truth Commission, the responsibility of businessmen, for example, in financing paramilitarism (…) but it would not be fair to generalize that all businessmen are or were against the agreements ”.

He also had words for the former commander of the National Army, General Jorge Enrique Mora, for his criticism of the agreement in Havana, when he supported him: “I would tell you to keep thinking a lot because your signature appears in the Peace Accords”. And he added that “the politicization of our Armed Forces has been one of the most serious mistakes that has been committed in our democracy.”

A word of advice to Duque: stop bragging about “the number of bandits discharged”

To Iván Duque, former President Santos recommended reaching out to the populations that have suffered the most from violence with a state presence, instead of providing figures of discharged criminals, although in vulnerable areas of the country there is restlessness.

“To President Duque or whoever comes I would give advice: change the metrics to measure the success of our public forces: Instead of taking out the chest by the number of bandits killed, measure in how many municipalities and villages the State managed to regain control. It is what would restore tranquility to those areas. The president who comes has a golden opportunity to do what he has to do around the agreements, “he said.

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“If Duque turns Green and pro-peace, I am the first to become Duchist”: Juan Manuel Santos