The Vice President of the Republic, José Gabriel Carrizo, has intensified his appearance at inauguration events for public works or works financed by the State, a few months after a ban was issued for pre-candidates and candidates for popularly elected positions to participate in inauguration events of Public Works.
Although a pre-candidate for Vice President Carrizo for the Presidency of the Republic has not been made official, according to the electoral calendar, from Wednesday, February 1, 2023 to Sunday, May 5, 2024, all pre-candidates and candidates of political parties are prohibited from participating in events inauguration of public works or in activities financed with public funds, which includes works financed by the State under the turnkey modality; and if he does, he will be disqualified in accordance with the procedure established in the Electoral Code.
Part of this norm is contained in article 282 of the Electoral Code and is applicable from February 1, 2023, when the electoral process for political parties is opened.
Vice President Carrizo, who would aspire to a presidential candidacy for the ruling Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD), and who is an election official, would also be subject to this prohibition, as well as representatives of townships, mayors, and representatives.
In February 2018, one year before the 2019 general elections, the Plenary of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ) declared as unconstitutional a sentence of the Electoral Code in force at that time, which allowed the participation of elected officials or servants through the popular vote, in acts of inauguration of works or activities financed with public money.
However, at that time, the Court’s magistrates concluded in the ruling that deputies, mayors and representatives (without mentioning the figure of the vice president), could not attend the inauguration acts of works carried out with state funds, because “since there is a prohibition for candidates and pre-candidates to participate in the inauguration of works or events financed with public funds, with even greater reason this prohibition must reach candidates or pre-candidates who hold positions of popular election, this derived from the direct access they have with respect to funds used…”.
Disqualification from running for elected office would be the sanction for those who fail to comply with this provision of the Court.
The ruling of February 9, 2018 was announced in an edict of April 26, in which a lawsuit of unconstitutionality filed by the lawyer and former ambassador Roberto Ruíz Díaz was resolved.
According to former electoral prosecutor Boris Barrios, the ban would also cover the Vice President of the Republic, from the moment he is postulated.
“There is a ruling by the Supreme Court of Justice on matters of unconstitutionality that makes the difference between elected officials and officials by designation. Elected officials can participate; however, from their nomination they are prevented from doing so,” he said.
Other experts in electoral matters point out that the prohibition times established in the electoral calendar are confusing or may be wrong.
“If the parties are going to hold their primary elections between June and September 2023, why is a prohibition in this sense going to be regulated as of February 1, 2023; that is, based on what if by that date it has not yet there are pre-candidates,” he said.
Another situation that he said seemed strange to him is a communication from the Presidency of the Republic informing that all PRD officials who wanted to be a candidate had to announce their interest before November 15 of this year and had to submit their resignation no later than November 15. January 2023. “I don’t know where they get that date from, if as of January 15, 2023, the PRD, for example, which is the government party, has not held primaries,” the source said.
The PRD will hold its primary elections on June 11, 2023.
He stressed that the Electoral Code is clear and indicates that the applicant is a candidate for the primary once that application is published in the Electoral Bulletin, and if the same Electoral Code indicates that the primaries will be between June and September 2023, by the date February 2023 there is still no application period.