Colombian lawmakers passed a bill on Tuesday aimed at allowing President Alvaro Uribe to seek a third consecutive term if the conservative U.S. ally chooses to run for re-election next May.
Uribe, popular for his U.S.-backed campaign against leftist rebels, has been evasive about whether he wants to run and he still faces hurdles to a possible re-election bid.
But his allies drove the bill through the legislature despite opposition fears another term for Uribe would undermine Colombia's democracy.
The bill calls for a referendum on whether to amend the constitution to allow re-election and must still go before Colombia's constitutional court.
Uribe's backers say a vote could be held earlier next year, but time is short as the court review could take three months and two more months to organize the referendum.
Should he seek re-election, Uribe would follow his leftist Andean neighbors, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Ecuador's Rafael Correa.
Last Mod: 02 Eylül 2009, 12:51