NewsWorldThe president of Panama, Laurentino Cortizo, reaches two years...

The president of Panama, Laurentino Cortizo, reaches two years in office amid protests


(CNN Spanish) – The president of Panama Laurentino Cortizo completed his second year in office this Thursday, with a Legislative Palace cordoned off by protection barriers and guarded by the police due to protests from several labor, student and teacher unions.

The protests were concentrated on the grounds of the National Assembly where, in addition to installing a new legislative period, Cortizo gave his annual report to the nation at the end of his second year in office.

The dozens of protesters who briefly confronted the anti-riot units, called through banners and slogans for jobs and justice, at a time when there is a strong economic crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic and several unsolved corruption scandals are listed.

The president of Panama, Laurentino Cortizo, during his speech at the Legislative Palace on July 1. (Credit: TVN)

Faced with the claims of a plan to get out of the economic crisis, Cortizo said in his speech that his government has five pillars of action to reactivate the economy, in a combination between health, social and economic, being vaccines against covid- 19 the main tool.

“Vaccination (against covid-19) is the most important public policy for economic reactivation,” said the president, adding that he hopes that next year they will be able to be without a mask in open spaces and reported that in July he expects the arrival of one million doses to the country.

“Clear and transparent accounts,” says the government

Regarding the demands for justice and transparency, the president assured that his administration has rendered clear and transparent accounts and that his government will not tolerate any act of corruption, reiterating his phrase that “whoever falls will be acted.”

Protests outside the Legislative Palace during President Cortizo’s speech in Panama. (Credit: TVN)

Not only opponents, but individuals and representatives of organized civil society described Cortizo’s speech as unreal, empty and with inaccuracies.

Olga De Obaldia, director of the Transparency International Panama chapter, told CNN that “there was a lack of real substance to what the country is expecting from the president. It was a litany of possible good news with some inaccuracies and doubts that it sows enormously with the content.

For his part, Eduardo Quirós, president of the El Siglo y La Estrella Editorial Group, said that “it was a message that leaves some pending spaces on very specific realities, especially in terms of economic reactivation, and the speech should have been linked to reality , the operation and execution of all government representatives.



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