What will the legislative elections in Colombia be like? | News

Next Sunday, March 13, the legislative elections will be held in Colombia, in which nearly 38,000,000 citizens will be able to vote for the congressmen for the period 2022-2026 at the polls of 112,897 tables distributed in the country.


Elections in Colombia: prospects for change and lack of guarantees

The legislative elections take place before the presidential ones. The following Sunday, Colombians will renew the 172 seats in the House of Representatives and 107 seats in the Senate.

voting hours

The polls will open from 08:00 local time to 04:00 p.m. (from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. GMT), throughout the national territory. Voters are not allowed access after the set time. Also, from Saturday March 12 to Monday 14 at 06:00 local time (11:00 GMT), dry law will apply in the country.

In turn, from March 7 to the next 13, the consulates or embassies of Colombia abroad will be enabled so that the 908,566 compatriots residing abroad who appear in the National Registry exercise their right to vote.

As the process is carried out in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, the mandatory use of the face mask was established, and one will be provided in case of not wearing it. The vaccination certificate will not be mandatory.

According to the National Registry, the security of this contest has been guaranteed through the training of the personnel in charge of counting the votes and the voting juries, against possible risks of electoral fraud.

On the official website of the Registrar’s Office, citizens should consult their polling station, where they can see the address and the table where they can vote. They only need to present the identity card.

valid vote

The vote is valid as long as Colombians do not mark more than one candidate on different lists or vote for two political movements. The blank vote is only available on the Senate and Chamber ballots, but not on those of the consultations. Each citizen will be able to choose which option to vote for.

Senate and House election

Upon arrival at the voting table, the jurors give each person two ballots, one to elect the Senate and one for the House of Representatives.

The Senate, a national constituency in which candidates receive votes from all regions of the country, is made up of 108 seats, but this time 107 will be chosen, because one seat is reserved for the candidate who obtains the second largest number of votes in the presidential elections.

Voting for candidates for the House of Representatives is at the local level, which means that each department of the country and the capital city, Bogotá, will choose their representatives. Some 1,500 candidates will have to compete to obtain the 172 available seats, which include the candidacies of indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities and representatives of Colombians abroad.

Citizens have the option of voting for an ordinary national constituency or for a special indigenous constituency and can only choose one of the two ballots.

Likewise, in these legislative elections, citizens will be able to request the ballot to vote for the consultations of the different coalitions that seek to define their presidential candidate.

They will be able to vote, among the pre-candidates, for the Centro Esperanza Coalition, made up of Alejandro Gaviria, Juan Manuel Galán, Jorge Enrique Robledo, Sergio Fajardo and Carlos Amaya; by the Historical Pact, made up of Gustavo Petro, Francia Márquez, Camilo Romero, Arelis Uriana and Alfredo Saade; and the Team for Colombia, whose members are Alejandro Char, Federico Gutiérrez, Enrique Peñalosa, David Barguil and Aydeé Lizarazo.

Sanctions and documents allowed

If the summons as a voting jury is not complied with, the citizen can carry from economic sanctions to disqualification from holding public office.

The valid identity document is the yellow card with holograms or the verified digital card, both physical and on a mobile device. The passport, the password, the military book or other document are not valid to exercise the vote.