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Thursday, September 19 2019 @ 02:10 am EDT

Conflict Between Corruption Czar and Attorney General Continues

Corruption By Elizabeth Garrido A. for La Prensa - Corruption Secretary Fernando Nunez Fabrega today described the actions of Panama's Attorney General Ana Matilde Gomez as a "game of baseball." "This is like the start of a game of baseball - no hits and no runs. The first player comes to bat and hits a homerum, and she (Gomez) says 'No, that guy cannot play.' What's that?" Complained Nunez Fabrega on the morning television news program TVN Noticias. The Secretary of the National Council of Transparency remains critical of the legal position assumed by Attorney General Gomez who says that Decree Number 231 could "conflict with the actions being developed by other institutions." The controversy comes after the Corruption Czar was given powers to investigate corruption cases that should not fall to him, explained Anti Corruption Prosecutor Yolanda Austin. Now, Nunez Fabrega wonders "how come Alma Montenegro de Fletcher [the previous anti-corruption czarina] did not investigate or accuse anyone, even though she had the power to do so?" It appears Gomez "thinks we should just take afternoon tea" at the National Council of Transparency, he said. (See Comments)

Editor's Comment: Ana Matilde Gomez is politically astute, however she has to play this one very carefully. Ricardo Martinelli will continue to support her, unless or until she takes some inexplicable action to defend or protect one of the senior level ministers of the Martin Torrijos administration. Obviously, Martinelli gave all of his ministers marching orders to check their desks for evidence and to start their administration by filing dozens of corruption complaints against the people they replaced. And now the Corruption Czar, Fernando Nunez Fabrega, is taking point on this effort to hold all public officials from the previous administration accountable for their actions. While in most other developed countries one would expect the Attorney General to welcome, support, and applaud the efforts of someone like an anti corruption czar. What's more, Gomez recently made statements supportive of investigative journalists, saying that sometimes their efforts can discover information and bring evidence to light that otherwise would have been overlooked. So why then does Gomez fear the efforts of Fernando Nunez Fabrega so much. The answer is obvious - another one of Panama's "open secrets" is that government officials of the Martin Torrijos administration were stealing money hand over fist. The new administration of Ricardo Martinelli is going to doggedly sniff out and report all of that activity. And then it will fall to Ana Matilde Gomez as the lead criminal prosecutor in the country to do her damn job. Her problem - she doesn't want to go after these people, and therefore she knows she will eventually be seriously conflicted. Maybe it's time for her to find something else to do.

Fábrega: 'Gómez recomienda que volvamos a las tardes de té'

Elizabeth Garrido A. De LA PRENSA/Archivo

Fernando Núñez Fábrega Notas relacionadas: • Poderes del zar desatan una agria polémica

7:01 a.m. - El secretario anticorrupción, Fernando Núñez Fábrega, calificó hoy la actuación de la procuradora Ana Matilde Gómez como un "juego de béisbol".

"Esto es es como un juego de beis: cero hits cero carreras... El primero que llega y le batea un jonrón, ella [Gómez] dice: No, ese no puede jugar. ¿Qué es eso?", se quejó Núñez Fábrega en TVN Noticias.

El secretario del Consejo Nacional de Transparencia mantiene sus críticas a la posición jurídica de la procuradora Gómez, en el sentido de que el Decreto No. 231 pudiera "reñir con actuaciones que desarrollan otras instituciones del Estado".

La polémica surge luego de que al zar se le dieron facultades para investigar casos de corrupción que no le corresponden, según explicó la fiscal anticorrupción, Yolanda Austin.

Ahora, Núñez Fábrega se pregunta "¿por qué Alma Montenegro de Fletcher [anterior zarina anticorrupción] no investigó ni acusó a nadie, teniendo los poderes?".

Todo parece indicar que Gómez "recomienda que volvamos a las tardes de té" en el Consejo Nacional de Transparencia, puntualizó.

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