BY ISABELLA COTA
Nicaragua’s Congress will probably approve today a constitutional amendment allowing President Daniel Ortega, who toppled a U.S.-backed dictatorship in 1979, to seek indefinite re-election.
Ortega’s proposal to eliminate a clause prohibiting re-election requires backing from 62 of the 92 lawmakers in Congress, where his Sandinista National Liberation Front has 63 seats. The 68-year-old former Marxist guerrilla ran the country from 1979 to 1990 and has been elected twice since.
“It’s likely to get through,” said Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue research institute in Washington. “His unexpected defeat in 1990 had a very profound effect on him and the result of that is that he’s not willing to give up power now.”
Ortega’s political support for ousted Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi and intelligence fugitive Edward Snowden has put him at odds with the U.S., the Central American country’s biggest trading partner. Yet foreign direct investment in the $11 billion economy is ... Read More