This Sunday, August 7, the president of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, requested the sword of Bolívar from the Military House. Hours earlier, the same request had been denied by outgoing President Iván Duque, despite the organizing committee having fulfilled all the requirements for its processing.
After being sworn in by Roy Barreras, president of the Colombian Senate, and having received the presidential sash from Senator María José Pizarro, the new president of Colombia swore in Vice President Francia Márquez.
Next, Petro asked the Military House for the Sword of Bolívar. Simon Bolívar was the funding father of Venezuela, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. One of his most important dreams was the unity of Latin America and the Caribbean free from United States interference.
“As president of Colombia, I ask the Military House to bring the sword of Bolívar… An order of the popular mandate of this president before the people, the congress and before the state,” Petro said at the ceremony, which attendees waited about 10 minutes for the arrival of the sword.
The moment when Bolívar's sword was brought from the Casa de Nariño to the swearing in ceremony, on order of President @petrogustavo—and following the denial by Ivan Duque.
Crowd chants: “¡Alerta! ¡Alerta! ¡Alerta que camina! ¡La espada de Bolívar por América Latina!”🗡 pic.twitter.com/0TErfK8Nfq
— Kawsachun News (@KawsachunNews) August 7, 2022
When the sword was arriving to the inauguration venue, the following chant was clearly heard from the crowd: “Attention, attention, attention to who’s walking! The sword of Bolívar for Latin America,” as reported by the Bolivian news outlet KawsachunNews on its Twitter account. This chant was popularized by President Hugo Chávez as a song for the unity of the hemisphere under the concept of la Patria Grande (the great homeland).
“This sword represents too much for us,” said President Petro when the sword entered the room. “I never want it to be buried again… That it only be sheathed as its owner, the Liberator said, when there is justice in this country. That it belong to the people, it is the people’s sword, and that is why we wanted it here in this moment and in this place.”
Iván Duque’s refusal
Marisol Rojas, communications coordinator for the presidential inauguration organizing committee, reported this Sunday morning that the sword of Bolívar would not be present during the president’s inauguration due to “lack of will” and the whims of outgoing president Iván Duque.
“We are surprised by President Duque’s capricious attitude and lack of will regarding his refusal to allow Bolívar’s sword to accompany the formal inauguration ceremony,” Rojas said.
Duque’s government demanded insurance policies, which were presented, but “yesterday (Saturday) late in the afternoon, President Duque gave the order that Bolívar’s sword should not come out,” noted Rojas.
Marisol Rojas provides more details
In an interview with Spain’s EFE news agency, Rojas spoke about the initial refusal for the use of the symbolic sword, which was stolen and then returned from the Colombian State in the 1980s by the M-19 guerrilla movement, to which Petro had belonged.
“All the required procedures were carried out, they were discussed at the Ministry of Culture, at the National Museum, and with the Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino,” said Rojas. “It’s a whim. There is no will, he doesn’t want to lend the sword,” insisted Rojas, who remarked that “La Paloma de la Paz” by master sculptor Fernando Botero was also prevented from entering the Casa de Nariño.
A symbol of struggle
The Commons (Comunes) party, into which the former FARC guerrilla forces were transformed after signing the peace agreement in 2016 with the Colombian government, commented on its social media platforms that the refusal to permit the use of these symbols revealed the “unpatriotic and warmongering” nature of Duque’s administration.
Duque cierra su presidencia negándose a facilitar la Espada de Bolívar y la Paloma de la Paz para la posesión del próximo gobierno. Muy diciente de lo que fue su gobierno antipatriótico y guerrerista.
— COMUNES 🌹 (@ComunesCoL) August 7, 2022
Translation: Orinoco Tribune
orinocotribunehttps://orinocotribune.com/author/orinocotribune/December 10, 2023
orinocotribunehttps://orinocotribune.com/author/orinocotribune/December 9, 2023