From accused to vice president, the possible future of Ricardo Martinelli

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  • Thu, 12/13/2018 - 16:13
From accused to vice president, the possible future of Ricardo Martinelli
  • EFE

Rómulo Roux could be evaluating adding Ricardo Martinelli as vice-president of his Cambio Democrático (CD) party in face of the next elections. The former president, who has recently experienced a turn in his case for the alleged wiretapping, aspires to the office of the Mayor of Panama by free application and the position of deputy for the circuit 8-8, CD.

In recent statements made by his spokesman, Luis Eduardo Camacho, 'Former president Ricardo Martinelli could accompany Rómulo Roux in the campaign as a candidate for vice president. This not only consolidates our party, but also brings a proven experience to the proposal that CD has to serve the country again as it did under the Martinelli administration, where there was quality of life for the people, growth and economic development, there was employment and citizen security, things that are now absent and the people suffer," according to a press release issued by the press office of candidate Roux.

As explained in the press release, this new change would occur because they are convinced that the unity of the collective is the way to consolidate the electoral victory in 2019

Martinelli, who faces a judicial process for alleged wiretapping, would be adding Roux as a function of his indisputable triumph as candidate for president by CD, but above all, for the political vision in which both agree: Panama needs to wake up again, so that Panamanians have jobs, growth and economic development, quality of life and a government that solves their problems.

"Only with Cambio Democrático in the Presidency of the Republic will it be possible to respond to the problems and to fulfill the people, as we already demonstrated with the Martinelli administration.

Other parties will take advantage of the situation to re-promise, as they have already done and have not complied. But Cambio Democrático has a plan to give answers to the people, as we have already demonstrated, and that will be possible now with Martinelli and Roux," the leader announced, according to the press release.

From the judicial point of view of Ernesto Cedeño, as he has expressed it in social networks, "it would be unconstitutional, in a systematic interpretation of the Magna Carta. The vice president could not occupy the main position in the absence of the owner and the constitutional article 178, for this case, prohibits that. There are other jurists who think otherwise."

Rodrigo Sarasqueta consulted the Electoral Tribunal (TE) in 2017 if Martinelli could be his vice presidential candidate.

The TE response was issued by the Legal Advice Department and it is clarified in the second paragraph that the aforementioned is not binding.

In accordance with numeral 1 of article 193 of the Political Constitution, Ricardo Martinelli Berrocal could be a candidate for the vice presidency of the Republic, in the next general elections of the period 2019-2023, replied Jaime Franco Perez, director of Legal Advice of the TE.

Article 193 of the Political Constitution establishes that the Vice President of the Republic may not be elected the President of the Republic who has performed his duties at any time, when the election of the Vice President of the Republic is for the period following his.

Meanwhile, article 178 of the Magna Carta establishes a ten-year ban for citizens who have been elected President of the Republic.

The Movement of Union Lawyers (MAG) questioned yesterday’s affirmations made by President Juan Carlos Varela, published in a printed media, in which the president said that 'powerful lawyers who defend the corrupt and drug traffickers' in the judicial sphere they are the same ones that at present seek to divert justice from the country.

In an open letter addressed to the president and signed by the president of the MAG, Raúl Rodríguez, and the secretary of the union, Ariel Corbetty, it is indicated that the work of the lawyer colleagues is to exercise the legitimate defense of a defendant, whether these delinquents are children of the cook or children of presidents, to avoid abuses of power.

'Defending potentially corrupt people and even drug traffickers does not make the defense colleague a partner of the defendant.

This assessment seems to contaminate the treating doctor with the patient's illness," says the MAG letter.

The union considers that if justice is diverted in our country, it should be noted that this responsibility falls on the Judicial Branch, which is the only body that issues rulings and on the Public Prosecutor's Office that conducts the investigations.

'In our country there are clients with economic resources, not just the corrupt and drug traffickers, and nobody is exempt from being part of an investigation; Moreover, you yourself, at the end of your term, may require a defense lawyer or maybe a family member; and by defending you, your lawyer will seek to mitigate your responsibility. That is the nature of our profession', warned the MAG.

For this union, the President of the Republic, in his temporary presidential role, does not have to express such discrimination, unless he first repeals the Constitution, the laws and the presumption of innocence.

With information from La Estrella de Panamá


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