He got what he was after, and now he’s free to ignore the will of the electorate:
Colombia’s President Hopes Nobel Prize Momentum Pushes Peace Deal to Finish Line
After four years of negotiations, Mr. Santos won congressional approval for the pact with the rebels last month, just weeks after voters narrowly rejected an earlier version in a plebiscite. But to fully implement a pact that gives the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, seats in congress in exchange for disarming requires constitutional reforms that must be debated and voted on by lawmakers.
That promises to take months amid stiff opposition from a former president turned senator, Álvaro Uribe, who argues that the government is selling out to a group many consider a terrorist organization.
“This is total impunity,” Mr. Uribe said in a speech Friday from Washington, where he was lobbying against the pact.
Mr. Santos said the award has given him momentum to end the Western Hemisphere’s last major conflict, an effort he called “a ray of hope” for other war-torn countries in the world.
. . .
The president could receive another boost on Monday if Colombia’s Constitutional Court gives his government “fast track” powers to quickly approve vital reforms that are in the pact. That would ease implementation of the peace deal, which calls for the FARC to convert to a political party and for the government to create a special tribunal to investigate war atrocities.
Santos gave an interview in Oslo, after which Uribe sent a press release,
— Álvaro Uribe Vélez (@AlvaroUribeVel) December 13, 2016
Article at The Economist:
President Santos repeatedly promised voters would have the last say in any deal with the FARC. They didn’t https://t.co/Gb9mAaqhtv
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) December 11, 2016
The president had promised time and again that Colombian voters would have the last say in any agreement with the FARC. But after his defeat at the polls in October, Mr Santos was forced to choose between unpalatable options. Putting the updated terms to a new referendum risked a devastating second rejection. Instead, he settled for legislative passage. That eliminated the risk of a return to war, but also meant the pact will lack the democratic reinforcement of a formal seal of approval from voters.
Peace Agreement? FARC Accused of Violating Ceasefire for Third Time