Colombia's Presidential candidates participate in pre-election debate Colombia's Presidential candidates participate in pre-election debate 

Colombians to choose new President

Colombians go to the polls Sunday to choose a new President in an election that is polarized by left and right.

By James Blears

In the one political corner is left-winger and senator Gustavo Petro, who as a teenager joined the guerrilla group 19th April, which evolved into M19.

Across the divide is Federico "Figo" Gutierrez, who has the sympathy and support of the political ruling class, which has trepidations and palpitations about a Petro victory.

And then there`s 77-year-old rightest independent candidate Rodolfo Hernandez, who`s gaining in popularity, with his anti-corruption pledges.  He`s recently surged from 9.6 percent to over 19 percent in the opinion polls, which puts him level with Gutierrez. They each have about twenty percent while Petro has about forty percent support.  

Petro is expected to win in round one, but not with the fifty percent or more needed for outright victory.  Round two would be on June 19th. Then the king making, and alliances would assume a different significance and meaning. 

In 2018, Petro lost to Ivan Duque, who`s the outgoing President. The question which will only be answered by the Colombian people is who`s going to be their next leader in a time of flux and change. 

Listen to the report by James Blears
28 May 2022, 13:21