The U.S. Department of State has identified politicians and several other officials in Guatamela, Honduras, and El Salvador with ‘alleged’ fraudsters.
A report from the US State department about Central American officials is “falsely accused” of being chicks includes Five Salvadoran officials (PDF) and liaising with President Nayib Bukele, six Honduran MPs and two lawmakers in Guatemala, according to published list (PDF) and the office of U.S. Ambassador Norma Torres Tuesday.
The list came out less than a week after US special envoy to Central America, Ricardo Zuniga, visited The Savior and met with Bukele under pressure from U.S. President Joe Biden’s supervisors to address corruption and enforce the law in the region.
In a report I asked, which is now publicly available, the US government has acknowledged the frauds that Central American authorities and their allies have denied & attempted to cover up.
– Author. Recreation (@growth) May 18, 2021
The US has encouraged democracy to be one of the mainstays of Central America, citing widespread corruption as one of the main causes of illegal immigration.
“We cannot expect the people of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to succeed at home when their constituents are more interested in self-interest than in serving the people,” Torres, a California Democrat who heads the Central America Caucus, said in a statement. Tuesday.
“The list is a powerful one, but it is only the first step to prosecuting them.”
The new Bukele’s party disrupted the February elections, and reformed parliament and immediately voted this month to remove a senior anti-corruption lawyer and several high court judges who had blocked the president’s intentions.
While Bukele is still popular at home after decades of false rule following the end of the country’s civil war, critics in the US say that by regaining power, he is destroying organizations that have already collapsed.
Prominent among the list is Bukele’s prime minister, Carolina Recinos, who has worked closely with the president since entering politics as mayor of the small town of Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front formed by left-wing militants after the war. There were no details of the crimes committed by Recinos.
He is also named Rogelio Rivas, who was last month appointed Minister of Security and Justice. The State Department said Rivas allegedly offered his company a number of non-competitive contracts, unaware of the need to build police and other facilities under his supervision and then increase the price of goods.
Also including lawmaker Guillermo Gallegos, who founded the GANA party that aligned with the El Salvador’s Presidential sponsorship program in 2019.
Two former FMLN MPs – Sigfrido Reyes and Jose Luis Merino, who was also the deputy foreign minister for the FMLN government that led the Bukele administration – are also included.
Bukele, who has accused the US of being cruel, used jokes to counteract the report, which was published on Monday earlier on television. He said he was shocked that his “friends” of El Salvador had researched their past and found no problem within the self-proclaimed party of ARENA – who fired him frequently.
“Maybe they think they’re all saints,” he wrote on Twitter. “That’s why he insists that we bring them back to power.”