What is the delay in all of the political charges to be enforced? Takes forever
- By : James Bryson
- Category : Political FRAUD
The delay of the Judicial Branch in those cases in which local authorities have been sentenced for crimes against the public administration, was questioned by sectors of civil society, after the representative of the township of Chilibre, the PRD Yoira Perea, who was sentenced to 60 months in prison for a crime of embezzlement, was sworn in as president of the Municipal Council of Panama.
And not only that, he will be accompanied during this period as vice president of the council by the representative of San Felipe, Mario Kennedy, convicted in 2012 for the crime of fraudulent embezzlement to the detriment of the township’s Community Board.
Kennedy’s process began with an audit by the Comptroller General of the Republic –remitted to the Public Prosecutor’s Office in 2005–, which detected a possible patrimonial damage for $441,592, after the allegedly irregular handling of funds in the Communal Board of San Felipe between 1999 and 2003.
The case against Kennedy that began in 2005 was defined in August 2021, after the Criminal Chamber did not admit an appeal filed by his lawyer.
In the case of Perea, who took office as president of the Municipal Council on Tuesday, January 3, she is among a group of 30 people who were sentenced 14 years after the investigation began for the commission of a crime against the administration. public in the modality of different forms of embezzlement, to the detriment of the Ministry of Education.
After the investigation, it would have been verified the embezzlement and appropriation of money belonging to the Fund for Equity and Quality of Education (FECE), for the sum of $1,568,063.82 million.
Judicial delay has no justification
For Annette Planells, from the Independent Movement (Movin), the responsibility for this type of situation lies with the Judiciary.
“All criminal cases involving high-level officials and political candidates must have priority so that trials, appeals, and cassations are resolved quickly, preventing us from having criminal officials with access to millions of dollars from all Panamanians,” he specified. .
He added that the absence of a Judicial Career and the corruption practices from the Supreme Court itself will take years to correct, for which reason he considered that citizens and the media must continue to press for objective, expeditious and independent justice.
He also argued that there are too many cases to be resolved from the mixed inquisitive system, which result in very slow processes and with room for many delaying practices by lawyers. “Basically, if you have the resources and influence you can make the system much slower,” he said.
For her part, Olga de Obaldía, executive director of the Foundation for the Development of Citizen Liberty, indicated that this situation is a symptom of a greater evil: “the failure to demand integrity and ethics from those who hold public office.”
“And this is partly rooted in the fact that in the political parties themselves —which should be trainers in public service issues— it seems that it has also ceased to be a value,” he added.
The former vice president of the National Bar Association, Alfonso Fraguela, who said he did not know the details of the files of each case, pointed out that usually what could have happened is that some of these cases are not final and are pending the results of some legal proceedings instituted in the Supreme Court of Justice.
“The truth is that in the face of this reality, the image of the Municipal Council and its members is tarnished. This forces us to think about the future as voters, who we give the vote to represent us, ”he said.
Regarding the fact that these processes take many years to resolve, Fraguela specified that this is the question that we all ask ourselves. “There is no justification for delay in resolving the resources or actions established.”