Court Annuls “Mega-Commission” Findings Against Ex-President Alan García

[All links lead to Spanish pages, unless otherwise noted.]

Expresidente Alan García.

Ex-president Alan García. Image by Flickr user Presidency of the Republic of Ecuador and is used under a CC license Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

The attorneys for the ex-president Alan García, Wilber Medina and Genaro Vélez, reported at a press conference at Congress on April 1 that the Fifth Constitutional Court had annulled [en] the third declaration given by the ex-president last October 30 before the Congressional Investigative Commission [en] known as the mega-commission, which in effect means that the findings [en] recommending the disqualification and impeachment of the ex-president are voided.

It bears remembering that in four of the eight cases investigated by the mega-commission, impeachment was recommended:
1 – Flagship schools: For signing Emergency Decree 004-2009 which allowed the choosing of companies to remodel theses schools without open bidding.
2 – Water for Everyone: For allegedly engaging in a criminal conspiracy to violate Article 125 of the Constitution, thus allowing projects to be awarded personally and generating losses for the State with poorly designed technical documents.
3 – Political interference BTR: for interference in the political and tax investigation in the case of wiretapping by Business Track [en], in 2009.
4 – Narco-pardons: For violating the Constitution by reducing the penalty of 400 people sentenced for drug trafficking.

The mega-commission has been working on these and other cases since 2011, and ex-president Alan García has continued to point out that his goal is to get it annulled electorally for the next presidential elections in 2016.

Congressman Sergio Tejada, President of the mega-commission, stated on Twitter:

The history of our Peru should not record a new episode of impunity. Democracy is severely chipped away when there are untouchables.

Via a Twitter account that supposedly belongs to ex-president Alan García, he expressed satisfaction with the judicial decision, adding:

I’ll finish my political career when the people decree it, and when my conscience mandates, not when it’s ordered by whomever is in the Palace [of Government, official presidential residence].

It’s not the first time the courts have decided in favor of the ex-president. Last year it also ordered the annulment of the investigation for violating his right to due process.

In an article from late last year, the website Otra Mirada mentioned questions about the affiliation of the nation's Attorney General, José Peláez Bardales, with the Aprista Party [en] (Alan García's party) and indicated:

el ex presidente Alan García se ha venido librando de las responsabilidades de fondo en delitos de diversa dimensión que lo vienen persiguiendo desde la década de 1990. Por todo ello, resulta necesario investigar al ex presidente Alan García con el mayor detalle posible para evitar que un manto de impunidad lo libre de dar cuentas claras al país. Queda en manos del pleno del Congreso, del Ministerio Público y del Poder Judicial demostrar que en el país las leyes se respetan y los delitos tarde o temprano se pagan.

Ex-president Alan García has been freeing himself from basic responsibilities with offenses of varying degrees that have been after him since the 1990s. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate former president Alan García in as much detail as possible to avoid a blanket of impunity which frees him from an accounting to the country. It rests with the full Congress, the Public Ministry, and the judiciary to show that in this country, laws are respected and that sooner or later, crimes are paid for.

One sector of the population and several organizations that don’t agree with the judiciary’s decision called for a mobilization and protest action in the streets of Lima under the tag #TomaLaCalle [take the streets]:

Today, March 31, 2014, in the Plaza San Martin

Are we going to let [Alan Garcia] keep laughing at Peru?

San Martin 7 p.m. protest against the embarrassing ruling that annuls the decision by mega-commssion.

Once again, Alan García and the judiciary make fun of a whole country.

But another sector didn’t hesitate to describe the protesters as lazy or worse:

Attention, Lima! Today the lefties [are out], keep an eye on your wallets and walk carefully, I’m sick of these disguised delinquents.

Act one — they create the mega-commission. Act two – it becomes mega-showoff. Act three – What is the action named – Caviar in action

There were more vendors today than protesters. Thanks ‘auntie magnificent’ [nickname for Lima mayoress], lazy people who respect themselves, just cross your arms and vote for [Lima mayoress] Susana Villarán.

If they can’t touch Alan García, it’s because of the ineptitude o the mega-commission, why don’t they do a ’take the streets’ for this mega-fraud?

And then some tweets from the protest at the Plaza San Martín:

Take the streets against impunity of Alan García.

But even these tweets didn’t go unchallenged by Alan García sympathizers. Armando calls the ex-president’s opponents calichines (inexperienced or amateur):

Take note, calichines! And go cry to the Rimac river.

The journalist Jacqueline Fowks reports that “it’s up to the congressional prosecutor to appeal this decision to the First Civil Court of Lima, above the Fifth Constitutional Court.”

Original post published in the blog Globalizado by Juan Arellano.

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