19 de abril de 1970: “Nunca se quiso investigar a fondo”

Por HERMANN SÁENZ PRIETO

Entrevista a María Ximena Plaza y Sandra Rodríguez Novoa, autoras del libro Oscuro abril.

Hace 50 años, el 19 de abril de 1970, se cumplió la elección presidencial que dio como ganador a Misael Pastrana Borrero, en una jornada atravesada por la sombra de la duda sobre el real vencedor: cuando se hacia el escrutinio y los boletines daban como ganador a Gustavo Rojas Pinilla, de un momento a otro Carlos Lleras Restrepo mandó al país a dormir y al día siguiente apareció el candidato conservador como el triunfador de la contienda.

Este suceso inspiró la tesis de grado de Comunicación Social y Periodismo de la U. Javeriana, María Ximena Plaza y Sandra Rodríguez Novoa, que luego se convertiría en el libro Oscuro abril, editado por Random House con sello Aguilar. Ellas sostienen que sí hubo manipulación de los resultados y engaño a la voluntad popular, de diversas formas. “Lo que pasó con esa elección es que hubo una burla descarada a la voluntad del pueblo, porque fue un fraude casi a gritos”.

Parte del atractivo del libro es que hay un minuto-a-minuto de lo que ocurrió la noche en que el presidente Carlos Lleras Restrepo ordenó el toque de queda.
Haga click en la imagen para dirigirse a la entrevista.

Sandra agrega que “nunca hubo una investigación profunda y seria, ni del Gobierno de turno ni del gobierno subsiguiente, menos de la autoridad electoral, y los medios de comunicación nunca tuvieron una postura crítica frente a lo que pasó”.

Parte del atractivo del libro es que hay un minuto-a-minuto de lo que ocurrió la noche en que el presidente Carlos Lleras Restrepo ordenó el toque de queda y el diario El Espectador alcanzó a tener lista para su edición del día siguiente una portada que daba como ganador a Rojas Pinilla.

A esa elección enmarcada en el Frente Nacional, a la que por el acuerdo de Sitges no podía acudir el liberalismo, el Partido Conservador llegó dividido con tres candidatos (Misael Pastrana, Belisario Betancur y Evaristo Sourdís), y el general Rojas Pinilla contaba con el apoyo de buena parte de los conservadores.


¿Qué habría pasado si Rojas Pinilla hubiera sido el presidente, como al parecer le correspondía? Es la pregunta que ellas les hicieron a los personajes que participaron en esa campaña, quienes se sentían representados por Rojas Pinilla y terminaron frustrados por el fraude final.

Las autoras Plaza y Rodríguez brindan claridad en que antes de esa elección ya existía un movimiento llamado Comuneros, fundado por Jaime Bateman, que inspirado en el 19 de abril tomaría el nombre del M-19. Esto se traduce en que, contrario a la creencia, el grupo guerrillero no se creó únicamente como resultado del fraude electoral fraguado ese día.

50 años después, nadie se ha atrevido a averiguar a fondo. ¿Por qué? Porque tanto el Gobierno como los medios de comunicación se sintieron cómodos con el resultado y prefirieron dejar así.

En este video va la entrevista de El Unicornio a las dos autoras de Oscuro abril, María Ximena Plaza y Sandra Rodríguez Novoa.

Vea la entrevista completa aquí.

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