Lithuanians in the News
6th June 2010
Lithuanian Heritage Antanas Mockus Runs for President of Columbia
Election poster featuring Antanas Mockus.
Photo courtesy
In the first round in the election for the President of Colombia on May 30, 2010, Lithuanian heritage Antanas Mockus achieved a very creditable result with 22% of the vote and will now contest the run-off on June 20 against Juan Manuel Santos, who obtained 47% in first round.
The 58 year old Aurelijus Rūtenis Antanas Mockus – Šivickas, to give him his full name, was born in Colombia to Lithuanian parents, who migrated to Colombia after World War II. He speaks Lithuanian well and has made a number of visits to Lithuania.
Antanas Mockus has been making his mark on Colombian politics by his non-traditional views and unconventional behaviour. He is a mathematician and philosopher, has been president of the National University of Colombia and has also served as Bogota’s mayor. His two terms as mayor of Bogota were marked by innovative but effective solutions to Bogota’s problems. He is credited with turning Bogota around from a drugs and crime infested place into a prosperous city of the future.
His earlier two attempts at the Colombian presidency in 1998 and 2006 were not successful. This year running as the Partido Verde (“Green Party”) candidate, he increased his electoral position in a phenomenal few months from way behind to presenting a very strong challenge to the ruling party. So much so, that just prior to the first round opinion polls predicted that he might even win the presidency outright in the first round.

Further information: 30/05/10, 31/05/10