(CNN Spanish) – The right-wing candidate, Federico ‘Fico’ Gutierrez, did not reach the second round and in his speech conceding defeat he said he would support Rodolfo Hernandez and his deputy Marlene Castillo card. “I want to say publicly that we do not want to lose the country and that we will not jeopardize the future of Colombia, our families and our state. That is why Rodrigo and I will vote for Rodolfo and Marilyn. We are not and will never be indifferent to the future of the country and we want the best for Colombia,” Gutierrez said.
“At the moment I want to speak to Colombia, but to speak from the heart. In a very short time, being two new faces in national politics, together with my friend Rodrigo and us, we have achieved a lot. And more than 5 million Colombians voted for us on Election Day For this, we want to thank you infinitely for placing such trust in us,” Fico said, pointing to the card of the Vice President, Rodrigo Lara.
Gutierrez and Lara, who emerged during the election campaign with the second most votes, failed to beat Hernandez and remained with 23.9% of the vote.
During the presidential debates, Gutierrez was a vocal critic of Petro. And I continue this line in his address this Sunday:
“Gustavo Pietro, for everything he said and everything he did, is not suitable for Colombia. It would be a danger to democracy, freedoms, the economy, our families and our children. That is why we believe that this choice would be a danger to the country.
Fico focused his speech on “preserving democracy and freedoms”, as well as security, and criticized Petro, considering that he has a “populist and authoritarian project.” He signed with a movement endorsed by 1.2 million signatures and claims to be “the people’s candidate”. At the age of 48, he was the youngest candidate in this election.
Gutiérrez used his good behavior as a campaign argument for his running in the Medellin mayor’s office, finishing his term with 82%, according to an Invamer poll. From the mayor’s office, he highlighted that he persecuted “bandits” and criminal structures that were threatening the city’s security.
Read here the full speech of Federico ‘Fico’ Gutierrez after losing the first round of the presidential election
Good night to all Colombians. The country has already spoken, and we want to respond to our country that has spoken. Rodrigo and I would like to reply to you with our wives Margherita and Anna and our whole family. Above all at this moment, I would like to speak to Colombia, but I am speaking from the heart. In a very short time, being two new faces in national politics, together with my friend Rodrigo and we, have achieved a lot. And to the more than 5 million Colombians who voted for us on this election day, we would like to thank you infinitely for placing such trust in us.
For me and Rodrigo, let it be clear, for us and our families, the country will always come first, above our individual and personal interests. Today, Colombians have two alternatives in this electoral contest approaching on June 19th. And that is why, knowing that our position is crucial to the future of Colombia, we made a decision that we want to communicate to the country. I have not spoken to Rodolfo, neither Rodrygo nor I have spoken to Rodolfo, nor do I need to. And I want to say publicly that we do not want to lose the country and that we will not jeopardize the future of Colombia, our families, our country.
That is why Rodrigo and I will vote for Rodolfo and Marilyn. We are not and will never be indifferent to the country’s future and we want the best for Colombia. That is why we are running the electoral competition in pursuit of uniting Colombia and seeking what is best for our country. We are no longer in the electoral competition. This is democracy. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but democracy is nurtured and respected. Gustavo Pietro, for everything he said and for everything he did, does not fit Colombia. It would be a danger to democracy, liberties, the economy, our families, and our children. That is why we believe that this option would be dangerous for the country.
We make it clear, yes, that Rodolfo and his team will be held accountable for their actions within the government. And also, making it very clear that neither I nor Rodrigo will be part of his government and we will not seek to do so. We will maintain a watchdog position and always try in a reasonable, appropriate and coherent way to unite Colombia, and that is the most urgent goal, because it is the way that Colombia can move forward.
And what we want from the heart is that Colombia is doing well and that is why we cannot be indifferent about the moment the country is going through today. With respect and gratitude to the more than 5 million Colombian men and women who voted for us to give us the vote of confidence, I invite you to take care of the country and vote for Rodolfo and Marilyn on June 19. Why? Understand that of the two options, today is the most reasonable way to nurture democracy and take care of liberties. Because once democracies leave, they don’t come back. And if we have the possibility, as we do at this moment, to take a responsible political position with the State, we do so precisely for the sake of our children, our families, and all Colombians.
We thank all the civil sectors and all the political and social sectors that accompanied us during these long months of struggle and that truly placed their trust. Thank you to all Colombians for that affection that they expressed to us in all regions and each time I leave more love with Colombia and our regions. For we have traveled from north to south, from south to north, from east to west, and from west to east. I have a great fortune and I have a great fortune because I had a great companion, but above all a great friend and a great Colombian like Rodrigo Lara.
And I want to thank Margara, my wife, for carrying so much with me during these difficult months. Thank you to my sons Emilio and Pedro, whom I love and tell them and all the children of Colombia that we will continue to look for a better future for Colombia and we will not stop working with them. And a big thank you to the families and friends of the media nationally and internationally. And of course, those who have never been on the news or in interviews, who are behind all those cameras and televisions and who make all this possible. My love for you too. Thank you for your respect and for accompanying you and defending democracy and freedoms. Perhaps the best that comes to all.