From May 26 to May 31, I was in Cali, Colombia serving as an election observer with an international delegation of mostly Black women. This is a preliminary report. On May 26th, in my capacity as the co-coordinator of the Haiti/Americas Team for the Black Alliance for Peace, I traveled with a delegation to Colombia to serve as an official observer of its presidential elections. The elections were historic: not only was a leftist presidential ticket leading in the polls, but the vice presidential candidate on that ticket was Francia Márquez, a popular and well known Afro-Colombian feminist activist. As . . .
This article was written before the March 13 primaries when Francia Marquez received more than 780,000 votes. She received more votes than any Black politician in Colombian history. Would her outstanding performance, surpassing even candidates from right-wing parties, be enough to secure her the nomination to run as vice-president candidate in the frontrunner party Pacto Historico?* Francia Márquez Mina, a 40-year-old Black female activist from the predominantly Black and forgotten region of the Colombian Pacific coast, is shifting the terms of political debate in the second ‘Blackest’ nation in South America. Francia, the first Black woman to run for the . . .