The combative conservative who led Colombia from 2002 to 2010 announced Monday he is running for Senate in March elections, two months before a presidential vote.
Uribe is constitutionally barred from a third presidential term.
He will run as part of a movement he created called Centro Democratico atop a closed list of candidates, meaning his chances hinge on how many votes his party wins.
Uribe's approval rating stands at 63 percent, more than 40 points higher than that of President Juan Manuel Santos.
Uribe is a fierce critic of Santos' efforts to make peace with Colombia's main leftist rebel group. Santos has not yet said whether he'll seek re-election.