Is Honduras Facing a New “Coup” ?

The technical coup d’état.

The President of the Association of Presidents and Magistrates, Theodore Bonilla, opposes the ‘Constitutional Tribunal Project’ delivered by the National Party Congressman, Oswaldo Ramos Soto. The President of the legislative power, states that the Project proposes a change in the constitutional judicial branch, to give way to a new jurisdictional organism, supposedly that would deal with conflicts between powers of the State. This has caused uncertainty, and even fear, among various sectors of the country.

The Association of Presidents and Magistrates in Honduras has interpreted this initiatave as a “technical coup” against the judicial power, and the Magna Carta.

By dissolving this function of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ), it would reform Article 4 of the Constitution, which covers the structure of the government. This structure defines a tribunal, represented by the three different powers of the State; the legislative, judicial and executive branches. If Honduras were to support this Constitutional Tribunal Project, it would destroy the initial tribunal, and introduce a fourth power, therefore destroying the Constitution. A national Constitutional Assembly would need to be held in order for the third power of the State to be changed.

As was agreed in the Truth Commission, the current constitutional tribunal is in place to solve conflicts between the three powers of the State, but only when the Supreme Court is involved in this conflict.

This has been presented to the National Congress President, Juan Orlando Hernández, to be analyzed by all the political parties of the legislation; but, this document has not yet been presented nor discussed within Congress.

Ricardo Alvarez, head of the Nationalist party, claims that these things only create division between the powers of State. He emphasized that this is not the time to address such an issue, when the country faces crime, and other much more significant problems, “All this does is to create uncertainty within the public. Instead of inititives that devide Honduras, we need to focus on giving the public more security.”

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