Former Honduran President Manuel Zelaya announced yesterday that he would officially end his 30-year affiliation with the Partido Liberal (Liberal Party). Zelaya ran on the Partido Liberal ticket when he was elected president in 2006, but later accused the party’s leadership of having a hand in the military coup d’état that deposed him in 2009.
The coup was ordered to prevent Zelaya from seeking to change the constitution in order to run for another term as president. Still, Zelaya suspects his former party’s involvement. “We have renounced the party that committed the coup,” said the former president in an interview with Radio Globo referring to the Partido Liberal. In a press conference also on Monday, Zelaya went on to say that there will never be justice in Honduras over the coup and he called for the reform of the country’s two-party system, comprised of the Partido Liberal and the conservative Partido Nacional (National Party).
Last May, Zelaya signed an agreement brokered by Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez that allowed him to legally return to Honduras for the first time since the coup. Following his return, Zelaya founded the Partido Libertad y Refundación (Liberty and Refounding Party – Libre) in August. Zelaya’s wife Xiomara Castro de Zelaya is likely to participate in Honduras’ primaries in November as Libre’s first presidential candidate.