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Lawyer critical of Portugal for her responses to the National Assembly

LA PRENSA/Jorge Fernández
El presidente de la Asamblea Nacional, Sergio Gálvez, aseguró que los descargos de la defensora del Pueblo dejaron "muchas lagunas".

12/07/2013 - Reactions have continued to Ombudsperson Patria Portugal's appearance yesterday before the National Assembly to answer questions about puchases made by the agency.

César Ruiloba, president of the National Association of Lawyers, stated that the appearance "generated feelings of an institutional hopelessness and lack of credibility in the democratic institutions of the country."

Ruiloba said that the situation with Portugal is the consequence of having chosen a person for a post with political interests and that she has demonstrated that she was never suitable to deal with the responsibilities of the post.

The lawyer appealed to the Assembly to appoint an official to review what happened yesterday and repair the error that it made by dismissing Portugal.

Former Supreme Court Justice Edgardo Molina Mola said that what is important in this case is whether or not Portugal complied with requirements of the law.

"If she did not act properly, they have to prove it," he said.

However, he said that "the authority of the ombudsman rests on the moral authority of the ombudsman. If the ombudsman does not have morals, nor acts correctly, she cannot continue in the post."

Yesterday, Portugal defended consulting contracts that her agency issued for hundreds of thousands of dollars for services such as the redesign of the web site and customer service training.

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