War of words between Macri and Riquelme over suspended Boca elections

The judiciary called off voting last Tuesday over alleged irregularities in the electoral roll

The climate surrounding Boca Juniors has become even more tense after the elections were suspended by the Argentine national judiciary due to alleged irregularities in the electoral roll. The situation has led to a war of words between current Vice President Juan Román Riquelme and former President Mauricio Macri, who are now competing to become club authorities on different tickets.

Macri, who’s running for vice president on a ballot carrying Andrés Ibarra as presidential candidate, was the first to speak after the suspension was announced.

“We have the opportunity to end all these lies you’re telling Román,” Macri said, addressing Riquelme head-on. “If you really want a clean election, let’s get rid of all these voters who shouldn’t have entered the election roll, violating the rights of so many members.”

Riquelme replied to the accusations in a press conference Tuesday night. “We are heading into the cleanest and simplest elections in the club’s history,” he said. “We hope we can have them this Sunday. We hope the judge allows us to do so.”

The Boca vice president, who is now running for president, appeared alongside the club’s legal representative, Walter Krieger, who questioned judge Alejandra Abrevaya’s decision to suspend the elections. Krieger claimed her argument had “several weak points,” such as the time frame and the witnesses she called.

Boca supporters gathered outside La Bombonera in support of Riquelme pose in the former star’s topo gigio gesture, which the former star dedicated to Macri during their days as player and president.
Photo: Télam

The former star player also fired shots at Ibarra and Macri’s plan to move the iconic La Bombonera Stadium. “The one thing you can’t mess with is the fans. They want to rip their hearts out. They want to move the stadium away. If that happens, we’ll lose all of our history. These people don’t care about our club.”

Outside the stadium, thousands of Boca supporters gathered in support of the sitting vice president, waving jerseys and flags, while also setting off fireworks. The fans, who were later greeted by Riquelme, spurred chants for the elections to take place.

Ibarra replied shortly after in an interview with sports TV broadcaster TyC Sports.

“I’m surprised because neither [Riquelme] nor his lawyer gave any answers,” he said. “They tampered with the member numbers. The ruling is based on those findings. The judge says elections can’t be held in this situation, and we ask that those members be removed.”


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