Ex-police chief to become Colombian new VP

Bogota, Jan 13 (IANS) Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has said ex-police chief Oscar Naranjo will replace Vice President German Vargas Lleras, who is expected to quit to run for presidency.

“The general is a person who has served the country his entire life. He is a person whose loyalty is above reproach, a person who won the respect of all Colombians and the world,” Xinhua news agency quoted Santos as saying.

“He did impeccable work as a negotiator (with the guerrillas) and will be a superb Vice President,” he said.

Naranjo is a member of Bogota’s negotiation team in the peace process with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the largest rebel group in Colombia.

The peace accord reached late last year has ended a 52-year-long civil war.

Santos also praised Naranjo as “the most effective person in the fight against drug trafficking”.

Santos is expected to end his second four-year term next year. Vice President Vargas Lleras is supposed to resign in March to campaign for the Presidential elections scheduled for May 2018.