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Friday, August 29 2014 @ 12:20 PM EDT

Comptroller Confirms - Case on Audit of FIS/Blandon Sent To Public Ministry and Court of Accounts

CorruptionThe Comptroller General's Office confirmed yesterday they have sent an audit report to the Public Ministry and the Court of Auditors, in which they discovered an alleged violation against state assets of $178,867 dollars, and that the office of Deputy Jose Isabel Blandon used the Parish of Santa Ana as a screen. The audit is documented with a letter sent to Blandon's office by the parish priest in Santa Ana on 20 December 2009, asking for sporting equipment and bags of food from the Social Investment Fund for a social program.

However, both the administrator of the Santa Ana parish, Alina Cardoze, and the priest Manuel Man have denied in writing to the Chief of Audits of the Comptroller, that they have ever received any aid in the form of sports equipment or bags of food to distribute among the population of Calidonia. FIS documents, annexed to the special audit N. 027-003-2012/DINAGDESAFPF of the Comptroller, show the FIS paid $178,876 dollars in social assistance requested by the office of Deputy Blandon, which never went to the parish of Santa Ana as established by the purchase order. The audit also details that the person who signed the receipt for the satisfaction of the alleged aid given in seven instances was Santiago Alexis Tejada, an associate of Deputy Blandon.

In the letter of 9 September 2011, the pastor Man asked the Comptroller's auditors to perform the steps to shed light on this situation, "because as the Catholic Church we cannot be sponsoring an irregular situation." Yesterday, the Archbishop of Panama, José Domingo Ulloa, said he is aware of the situation, but said he prefers to decide, after hearing the detailed version of the pastor of Santa Ana. "I'm calling him to report to me, or explain this case," Ulloa reiterated.

Meanwhile, sources said yesterday the Court of Accounts is preparing to prosecute this case, while in the Public Ministry the file is being given to one of three anti-corruption prosecutors.

The person who tried to devalue the Comptroller's report was Deputy Blandon, who said via Twitter that the report on his case in the FIS was not finished, contrary to the documents and confirmation given by the Comptroller yesterday to the Panama America newspaper. Blandon said his reply would come through the exercise in competent legal instance, if that time comes, but in the meantime he would not be distracted or fall into the game. But he did not clarify why or how the official documents of the parish of Santa Ana indicate that he never sent the promised aid. (Panama America)

Editor's Comment: In the same way that the La Prensa newspaper is practically the official media outlet for the Panameņistas, the Panama America newspaper is practically the official news outlet for the Cambio Democratico party and Ricardo Martinelli. One of their primary targets is the Panameņista Deputy Jose Blandon. They would love to have some kind of a legal action that would stick against him, and they might have found it if these allegations of the diversion of FIS funds are true and correct. If you start with the premise that practically all Panamanian politicians are corrupt in one way or another, if you look long and hard enough then sooner or later you'll find a trail of breadcrumbs leading back to an empty government coffer somewhere. Most of them never get prosecuted because they all have information they can use against one another - but in this case the CD is at war with the Panameņistas and they are trying to destroy his political career.

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