Panama is in a moment of "inflection", with a president called to appoint 9 Supreme Court magistrates and the attorney general, a historic opportunity to realize the "radical transformation" of an exhausted and discredited Justice system, businessmen said Sunday from the country.
The Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture of Panama (CCIAP), one of the main unions in the country, warned that without the transformation of Justice "all other changes that may occur," in reference to the constitutional reform under way, " to recover the lost institutionality they will be simple palliative without permanent and much less sustainable support. "
"We trust that the Panamanian president, Laurentino Cortizo," aware of the high responsibility of the aforementioned designations, will assume it with the vision of statesman and the sense of Nation that Panama expects, said the Chamber of Commerce in a public statement.
As several national sectors have pointed out, CCIAP said that the new magistrates of the highest court and the head of the Office of the Attorney General (the attorney general) must be the "most capable citizens, probos and incorruptibles, so that they again give luster of prestige and respect for the various judicial instances. "
"This is a turning point in the life of the nation … There is no room for the mistakes of the past. We must be right with these appointments and recover the credibility lost in our instances of justice," he added.
The resignation last week of the attorney general, Kenya Porcell, following the leaks of messages from the phone of former president Juan Carlos Varela (2014-2019), put more precision on Cortizo, who took office just over four months ago and I already had the task of appointing three main magistrates and 6 alternates of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ).
The messages disseminated so far in the so-called "Varelaleaks" reveal details of court cases, personal opinions and an alleged influence peddling, through WhatsApp messages between 2017 and 2018 of the then president and other authorities of the country, businessmen, journalists and relatives .
"The crisis that the country has been dragging for a long time confirms that when some powers of the State fold to others in a submissive way … all the forces work and conspire to prevent justice from curbing corruption and impunity that, Regardless of any doubt, they are the main enemies of our development, "CCIAP said Sunday.
Cortizo has said that he is aware of the situation of the judicial system and that he will be very careful in appointing the new magistrates and attorney general, who must be ratified by the unicameral Parliament in extraordinary sessions that will take place between November 25 and 19 Next December.
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