Petro chooses Alfonso Prada as Colombia’s new Interior Minister

The president-elect of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, has revealed this Saturday that he has chosen Alfonso Prada to fill the position of Minister of the Interior in his new government.

Prada “will be responsible for relations with the legislature and for outlining policies on human rights, citizen participation and territorial planning,” Petro explained on Twitter. The decision was announced on the eve of Petro’s expected inauguration as president of Colombia.

Prada is a lawyer with postgraduate degrees in Constitutional Law, Philosophy of Law and Legal Theory. He was private secretary of the late Luis Carlos Galán, councilman of Bogotá for three terms.

He has been a councilman and representative to the Chamber of Deputies and has stood out for his conciliatory participation during the negotiation of the Peace Accords.

In the area of security, Petro has also announced his intention to propose banning the carrying of weapons and not authorizing any type of permits. “Eliminating the carrying of weapons in the city, with positive benefits according to the indicators in the decrease of homicides in the city, that is an issue worth valuing at a national level,” Petro has pointed out in the presentation of the Emergency Plan for the Protection of the Life of Social Leaders in Colombia.

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“From the special permits, since there is no ban on carrying weapons and there is a good business, there should be no special permits which means that the seized weapons should be destroyed immediately, not resold,” he said in statements reported by RTVC.

Regarding drug policy, Petro has called for a rethink. “It is up to us to put on the world table the discussion of ending that prohibition. This government must begin this discussion, first on a Latin American scale, which is our home and is the one that is suffering the consequences. We are in a prohibited business,” he said.

“You see in practice, how a country suffers, all those decades, just because there is a ban. The United Nations encourages the prohibition and I think we have to discuss it,” he argued.

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On the other hand, Petro has announced that Maria Isabel Urrutia will be the Minister of Sports. “She is considered one of the great glories of Colombian sport. The Valle del Cauca native filled Colombia with pride and glory by winning the first Olympic gold medal for the country in the sport of weightlifting,” he recalled.

In addition, he has unveiled the name of Irene Vélez as Minister of Mines and Energy. “Philosopher from UNAL with a PhD in Political Geography from Cophenague. She is a woman with extensive experience in the environmental sector and who will have the arduous task of leading the transition to a non-extractivist economy,” he stressed.

Finally, he has singled out Gloria Inés Ramírez as the next Minister of Labor. “A defender of human rights and the vindication of workers. She has been a woman who has fought for women’s rights and gender equity”, she has reviewed.

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