The Office of the Inspector General of Colombia, headed by Alejandro Ordoñez, ordered the mayor of Bogotá, Gustavo Petro, to be removed from office alleging mismanagement of the city’s garbage collection operation. Earlier in the year, Mr. Petro had transferred said operations from private contractors to a public-run service which came under fire and was seriously criticised by sympathisers and opponents alike.
In spite of Mr. Petro’s perceived incompetence and widely unpopular mandate, many see his removal as an excessive and misguided use of authority by the Inspector General. This seems to be certainly the case considering that Mr. Petro’s predecessor, Samuel Moreno, had been removed from office and banned from holding public office for 1 year by the same Inspector General after facing charges of corruption and improper conduct in the appropriation of city contracts. Mr. Moreno is currently imprisoned and awaiting trial. The powers confined to the Inspector General’s Office have come under scrutiny and have sparked controversy among many influential thinkers and the public opinion. Many perceive Mr. Ordoñez’s decision as a political manoeuvre in the face of the coming elections which seeks to favour his allies.