The President of Guatemala, Jimmy Morales, is again under the eye of the Justice for a case of alleged illicit electoral financing in 2015, and the Congress, which sheltered him last year and kept him immunity, could again be your best ally in this new application for immunity.
The Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) and the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) requested the preliminary hearing against the president on Friday, considering that in his capacity as general secretary of the National Convergence Front (FCN-Nación) party did not report to the Court Supreme Electoral resources for the presidential campaign.
And the currency is for now in the Supreme Court of Justice, which has to give green light to the impeachment. If the petition is admitted, the process has to be transferred to Congress.
In September of last year, the Legislature refused on two occasions to withdraw immunity from the president to be investigated for the same crime that is now suspected. That case was filed.
The Congress remains the same. Its president now is Álvaro Arzú Escobar, the son of the late metropolitan mayor and former president of Guatemala Álvaro Arzú (1996-2000), who was a great ally of Morales.
The vice president of the Legislature, Felipe Alejos, about which he also weighed allegations of influence peddling, said that if he were to reach parliament, the president’s request for impeachment would not prosper.
The deputy assures that he will not allow the president to be “hit” and that the country be destabilized, and attributes the legal actions against him to “an excessive and systematized hatred” orchestrated by the commissioner Iván Velásquez and the ex-prosecutor Thelma Aldana , who does not hide their political aspirations.
Political analysts also do not believe that the process will receive the vote of the 105 deputies for the head of state to be subjected to an investigation, and the “corrupt pact” in Congress could emerge victorious again.
In his first statement, the president said that he respects the rule of law and trusts “in a procedure framed in law and alien to political interests.”
In addition, it leaves in the hands of the institutions enshrined in the Constitution of the country the “solution to this new cause” promoted against it.
The general prosecutor and head of the MP, María Consuelo Porras, who was accompanied on Friday by the CICIG commissioner, the Colombian jurist Iván Velásquez, whom the president tried unsuccessfully to remove from the country last year after the first request for immunity, says that the request for the immunity of the president to be lifted is to begin an investigation.
Both the United Nations agency and the Office of the Prosecutor have the testimony of several powerful businessmen who admitted having financed the FCN-Nación campaign in 2015 in an anomalous way.
That party received, according to the preliminary investigation, more than 7.56 million quetzales (more than 1.01 million dollars) for the first and second round of elections held on September 6 and October 25, 2015, respectively.
The new complaint adds the discovery of 359,899 quetzales ($ 48,114) of party financing to pay for the training of the then candidates, Jimmy Morales and Jafeth Cabrera, current vice president of the country.
Of this account, the funding that was not reported to the Electoral Tribunal exceeds 7.92 million quetzales (1.05 million dollars).
Last April the group of big businessmen who gave money to illegally finance the campaign of the now ruling party showed their repentance and apologized to the people for taking “haste” that decision in the context of a political crisis.
In 2015, allegations of corruption against the then president, Otto Pérez Molina, and his vice president, Roxana Baldetti, led to protests in the streets until they resigned. Both are imprisoned and prosecuted for various crimes.
It was the perfect springboard for Morales, who was better known for his facets as a comedian on television than as a politician, to jump into the arena and win the presidency of Guatemala.
If the Justice does not reach it, the current president will conclude his mandate on January 14, 2020.