Last Thursday the 23rd, the president peter castlebacked by the Prime Minister, Aníbal Torres, presented to Congress a constitutional reform bill that seeks to change the rules of the game of impeachment and impeachment for constitutional infractions or commission of crimes by high public authorities.
With the modification of articles 99 and 100 of the Magna Carta, the Executive intends to modify both procedures that, at present, are in charge of Parliament. In one of them he proposes that the political impeachment pass into the hands of a commission of the Supreme Court. The other reform corresponds to the members of the Subcommittee on Constitutional Accusations (SAC)who will not be able to cast a vote in the Permanent Commission.
The proposal is announced after the SAC, chaired by Rosio Torres, decided to file complaints against former senior officials involved in criminal acts, as occurred in the case of the former de facto president Manuel Merino, who was armored. Similarly, it appears at a time when the highest representative of the Executive, Pedro Castillo, and Vice President Dina Boluarte have been denounced for allegedly having committed crimes and infringing the Constitution.
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In that sense, is the constitutional reform bill sent by the Executive an alternative that would reduce the risks of possible shielding?
In this regard, the constitutional lawyer Ana María Vidal considered that the proposal could limit political protections for high-ranking officials. She commented that the aforementioned initiative presents interesting aspects. She stressed, for example, that it will not be up to Congress to proceed with an investigation.
However, the lawyer made it clear that the project has questionable points and that one of them is that the Public ministry still depend on another organ to initiate a formal investigation. Likewise, he expressed his concern that this proposal, which has not had the comments of the institutions involved, has the same fate as the approach of the constituent assembly.
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“This type of necessary proposals does have to be worked on more thoroughly, but that does not imply that they should take years. They have to have greater weight when presenting them and not end up being one more proposal like the constituent assembly,” the specialist told La República.
Like Ana María Vidal, the constitutionalist Heber Campos was of the opinion that the approach of the bill gives vestiges that it could avoid impunity in cases of constitutional accusations. He commented that, with the preliminary hearing out of control by Congress, the decisions could remain on a more objective plane.
“It could help reduce shielding in the Congress because we remove this figure from the preliminary hearing of Parliament, which is a political body par excellence, and we take it to a more impartial space, such as the Judiciary, I think that from that point of view the figure is interesting”, the lawyer told this newspaper.
However, he mentioned that, far from the powers of the Legislature, it would be difficult to determine if the decision made by the specialized chamber of the Supreme Court it was the product of a deliberation subject to the accusation or, on the contrary, that hid some political interest. He also warned not to separate the announcement of this bill from the processes it faces. Castle and Boluarte in Parliament.
“When Congress determines whether or not a constitutional complaint proceeds to lift the jurisdiction of a high official for the alleged commission of crimes of function, the only thing that corresponds to it is to establish whether said complaint comes after a political interest or has behind him an interest outside of a criminal proceeding,” he said.
“But apart from that, it does seem interesting to me to think of mechanisms that avoid this type of situation become politicized because that is a bit of what we have also seen in recent months”, he pointed out.