|Guatemalan Attorney General Claudia Paz y Paz
Photo: Ministerio Público
Last week Guatemala’s Constitutional Court (CC) emitted a provisional ruling stating that Attorney General Claudia Paz y Paz should end her term in May 2014, seven months before schedule. Friday, the CC dismissed an appeal by Paz y Paz to reconsider its ruling.
US Ambassador to Guatemala, Arnold Chacón, immediately released a statement last week announcing that the US Embassy was closely reviewing the ruling and declared: “My government is privileged to have worked with a partner like Dr. Paz y Paz.”
Today, human rights and civil society organizations gathered to express their support for Attorney General Paz y Paz and to call on Congress to uphold the law despite what many consider to be another illegal decision by Guatemala’s highest court.
Translation by NISGUA
THE CONGRESS OF THE REPUBLIC
SHOULD NOT OBEY ILLEGAL ORDERS!
Article 156 of the Political Constitution of the Republic of Guatemala clearly states that: “No official or public employee, civilian or military is obligated to carry out orders that are manifestly illegal or that imply committing a crime.”
By granting a provisional decision based on false facts, the Constitutional Court is committing the crime of malfeasance (breech of legal duty) typified in the Penal Code:
“Article 462. Malfeasance. The judge, knowingly dictating resolutions contrary to the law or based on false facts, will be sentenced to prison for two to six years.”
As it has been exhaustively analyzed, the Attorney General of the Republic was named for a period of FOUR years on December 9, 2010, which means her period LEGALLY ends on December 9, 2014.
Any contrary decision is illegal and the judges that support such a decision are committing an illegal act outside of the law.
ENOUGH CORRUPTION AND IMPUNITY!
RESPECT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S CONSTITUTIONAL MANDATE!
Citizens for dignity and against corruption and impunity
2/11/14 Update: Yesterday afternoon Congress approved the creation of the committee in charge of nominating candidates for the Attorney General office to replace Paz y Paz in May. While 94 Congress deputies voted in favor, many expressed to Guatemalan media that their vote was a reasoned vote, influenced by outside pressures to comply with the Constitutional Court’s resolution.