Bogota (Agenzia Fides) - On the eve of the elections for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency of the Republic, the Bishops of Colombia renew their invitation to the Colombian people to participate widely and vote at the polls on Sunday, June 19. In the first round of presidential elections, held on May 29, left-wing leader Gustavo Petro won the most votes, with 40.2% of the vote, and independent Rodolfo Hernández (28.1%) , who will face each other in the second round on June 19. On several occasions in the past, the Bishops have invited all Colombians to participate in the elections, in order to strengthen the democratic system and contribute to the construction of a better country (see Fides 19/2/2022; 11/5/2022; 21/5/2022 ; 1/6/2022; 2/6/2022).
"Suffrage is a right and a responsibility", they reiterate in their last message before the elections, published on June 17 under the title "Let us exercise the right to elect and let us be sowers of hope". "We all have the right to freely choose the person who we believe is capable of directing the destiny of the country. The vote strengthens democracy, expresses the mandate of governability, does great good to Colombia and thus sows hope . Let us vote!" In the message, they also recall that "we are called to provide the common good through deeds" and that, just as we have the right to vote, we also have the right to see the results of the elections respected, "as a an unequivocal sign of an authentic democratic culture", they therefore invite "to avoid any manifestation of violence". Finally, the Bishops call on all Catholics, as well as all men and women of good will living in the country, to intensify their prayers for the nation and for those who will be elected as president and vice-president during the new presidential term for the period 2022-2026. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 18/6/2022)