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POLITICS

Discussion of electoral reforms delayed

The National Assembly instead has prioritized judicial reforms that could impact the Odebrecht case. 

Spanish version

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Deputies have delayed the discussion on electoral reforms for more than a year. Deputies have delayed the discussion on electoral reforms for more than a year.
Deputies have delayed the discussion on electoral reforms for more than a year. Aminta Bustamante

The Panameñista party caucus informed the Citizens Forum for Electoral Reforms yesterday that the second debate of the electoral reforms will be postponed.

Forum member Freddy Pittí said that the head of the ruling party's caucus, Gabriel Soto, informed the group of the decision that was ratified by the National Assembly's board of directors.

The measure was adopted because the Assembly decided to prioritize the debate of another law, which will reform judicial investigations, as certain provisions of that bill could impact the investigation of the Odebrecht case.

The judicial reforms were slated to be discussed after the electoral reforms, but they were moved up on the agenda.

Assembly Vice President Luis Eduardo Quirós reiterated yesterday that the judicial reforms "is a topic of national and continental priority, which everyone wants to be clarified."

The electoral reforms have been languishing in the Assembly since they were introduced on January 2106. The reformed were developed by a national commission, which spent a year working on them.

In March 2016, the legislature suspended debate on the reforms in first debate. In October, they were approved on first debate, but never discussed by the full legislature. Critics have accused the Assembly of failing to act on the reforms so they cannot be implemented in time for the 2019 election.

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