Key Aide Fingers Samper

  • Share
  • Read Later
BOGOTA, COLOMBIA: Saying that "the only remedy for this cancer is the truth," the chief of president Colombian Ernesto Samper's 1994 presidential campaign told a television audience that Samper "knew" that the powerful Cali cocaine cartel funneled money into his campaign, but did nothing to stop it. The allegations made by Fernando Botero, who also served as Samper's defense minister, brought a swift response from Samper, who called the remarks "slanderous" in a nationally televised broadcast last night. "Botero just got tired of being the fall guy," reports Latin American bureau chief Laura Lopez. "He's the one sitting in jail, while Samper continues to go about his business. It is commonly thought among Colombians that Samper knew the drug money was coming into his campaign, but he kept himself at a distance from it so he couldn't be charged. These revelations should renew calls for impeachment, but Samper is not likely to get impeached. The congress doesn't seem to have the political will to do it."