Colombian president delivers farewell speech

19:05, August 06, 2010      

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Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe smiles before casting his vote during legislative elections in Bogota March 14, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters File Photo)

Colombian President Alvaro Uribe delivered his last speech to the nation Thursday, two days before his second term ends.

In the 16-minute televised speech, Uribe compared his work during his eight years in office as growing seeds, one of them being convincing the country that security was possible.

The president said another seed he left was convincing the country Colombia is able to make social progress that was manifested in reality rather than speeches.

In addition, Uribe believed that Colombia should continue to attract regional investment to create more jobs.

He thanked different departments of the government and the international community for supporting him during his two terms in office.

Uribe also asked his countrymen to forgive his mistakes and failures that may have occurred under his watch.

He urged Colombians to support his successor, Juan Manuel Santos, his former minister for national defense.

Uribe was elected president of Colombia in 2002 and re-elected for a second term in 2006, becoming the first president to be consecutively re-elected in Colombia in more than a century.

Uribe's supporters had sought an amendment to the constitution that would have allowed him to run for a third term, but the Constitutional Court of Colombia rejected the proposal in a 7-2 ruling on Feb. 26, 2010.

The Colombian presidential election of 2010 took place under a two-round system with an initial vote held on May 30 and a second poll held three weeks later on June 20.

Since no candidate garnered a majority of the votes in the May 30 poll, Santos of the Social Party of National Unity and Antanas Mockus of the Green Party competed in a runoff election, in which Santos won a landslide victory with 69 percent of the votes.

The president-elect will be inaugurated on Saturday. A recent poll showed he would start with a 76 percent popularity rating.

Source: Xinhua


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