They warn that Nayeb Bukele is trying to “perpetuate himself in power” by reforming the Salvadoran constitution.

Salvadoran President Nayeb Bugele (REUTERS/Jose Cabezas)

Celia Medrano, a human rights defender and former Salvadoran vice-presidential candidate, warned Reform approved by Legislative Assembly Savior Changes in the constitution should be expedited “opens the door” so that the ruling party can remain “perpetually in power”.

The legislature on Monday approved an amendment to the constitution that would allow swift reforms to the Magna Carta in the assembly that takes office on Wednesday, May 1, and that maintains the majority of the president's Nuevas Ideas (NI) party. Naeeb Bukhele.

“By normalizing the violation of the Salvadoran constitution, the clear message is that all counterweights to the current power are removed, opening the door to its establishment”Medrano is considered a member of the minority Nuestro Tiempo party (NI, center-right). EFE.

He pointed out that the amendment, which must be approved by the next legislature, “breaks the lock that the ruling party majority on the Constitution has established precisely to protect its provisions from unconstitutionality.”

“The law is clear in prohibiting constitutional reform from being carried out by an outgoing legislature and Article 248 incorporates a set of articles known as 'stone', viz. It should not be modified because to do so would violate the very essence of constitutional law.“said the human rights defender.

Salvadoran activist Celia Medrano, human rights defender and former candidate for vice president (EFE/ Rodrigo Sura)

At least two judgments of the Constitutional Chamber (CSJ) of the Supreme Court (CSJ) establish that constitutional reform can only be ratified before a legislative election.

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“It is a constant violation of constitutional norms by the present legislature and government He alleged that since the people had empowered themselves by their votes, they had the power to do so by obtaining a legislative majority. However, no state organ has the power to override the law which represents a counterweight to the power,” he added.

The original wording of the second paragraph of Article 248 established that the only way to amend the Constitution was by approval by a simple majority in an assembly and confirmation by a vote of two-thirds of the members of the assembly.

The approved amendment adds that the process can be carried out in a single assembly with three-quarters of elected representatives, opening the door to faster reforms from May 1.

El Salvador Ernesto Castro (EFE/Rodrigo Sura) is the outgoing president of the Assembly

El Salvador's legislative president Ernesto Castro, whose duties end this Tuesday, has pledged to speed up changes in favor of reforming an article of the constitution. The ruling party calls the country “back”.

“We're here to change things and reinvent this country, that's what's needed and that's what we're going to do,” Castro, a former government official and member of the NI party, said on Tuesday. An interview with a local TV channel.

He advocated and promised reform that was approved “Everything the Legislature does is constitutional.”

“What we have done is that we can reform what the constitution says (…) the constitution has been respected and continues to be respected till date,” he said.

He pointed out that after the amendment, it should be ratified Tomorrow, Wednesday, May 1, the new legislature will take office for three years (2024-2027).“Let's see which sections of the Constitution need reform.”

On April 29, 2024, representatives of the Assembly will participate in the last plenary session in Antigua Cascatlan (El Salvador). The three-year term (2021-2024) of the current 84 representatives in El Salvador's legislature ends this Tuesday and the new legislature will take office on Wednesday (EFE/Rodrigo Sura)

NGO Citizen action He noted on Monday that the reform of Article 248 of the constitution eliminates “another political reaction” in El Salvador.

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Meanwhile, the far-left opposition Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) rejected it and called it “a new blow to the constitution”, “illegal, and with “The rule of law, the removal of checks and balances, continues to institutionalize an authoritarian regime.”

The approval of this controversial reform, which has not been scrutinized or analyzed in a congressional commission, joins other approvals strongly criticized by various sectors, such as the dismissal of judges from the constitutional chamber of the Supreme Court on May 1, 2021.

The amendment, which has drawn criticism from various Salvadoran sectors, adds to Article 248 that, as currently established, the same legislature can approve changes to the Magna Carta and ratify them without waiting for the next one.

(with information from EFE)

Eden Hayes

"Wannabe gamer. Subtly charming beer buff. General pop culture trailblazer. Incurable thinker. Certified analyst."

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