Three Salvadoran Commissioners added to Engel List

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By LatAm Reports Editor

Three commissioners from the Institute of Access to Public Information (IAIP), including the president of the Public Information, were included by the United States on the Engel List, in which the U.S. country includes actors in Central American political life who have undermined democratic processes, participated in corruption cases or obstructed investigations into the same issue.

Commissioners Ricardo Gómez, Gerardo Guerrero and Andrés Grégori Rodríguez were accused of “undermaking democratic processes or institutions to intentionally and unfairly block access to public information.”

The sanction to the commissioners is the suspension of their U.S. visas, if they possess; as well as being considered ineligible for that benefit, and the suspension of any document that allows them to enter the United States.

No wonder the commissioners are punished. Their omission affects access to information and helps any act of corruption to be concealed.
Eduardo Escobar, Citizen Action.

This media tried to contact the commissioners through the institute’s communications unit. The reply was that no guidelines had been received for IAIP or any of the commissioners to pronounce on the announcement. If it did, it would be through the official channels, they said. This media also tried to communicate directly with the commissioners by email, without obtaining an answer.

“Not strange”

The point made by the U.S. State Department coincides with the analysis presented last November by the organization Acción Ciudadana, which reflects the decrease in resolutions in favor of citizenship during Ricardo Gómez’s administration.

According to the study, during the current management: of 608 cases resolved, only 162 (26 per cent) were in favor of the citizenry. To compare, in the management of Silvia Cristina Pérez, 341 cases were resolved and 205 (60 %) were in favor of the population.

The IAIP has ceased to be a guarantor of access to information and has become complicit in concealing information that the GOES does not wish to provide.
Jessica Estrada, transp. de FUNDE.

In addition, of 71 cases resolved in 2022, four had been opened in 2020, 33 had been coming since 2021 and 34 were 2022.

Also that same year: five cases were resolved in favour of the institution, and 54 ended up with alternate exits, such as withdrawal (2), dismissal (10), expiration (1) or liminal rejection (41).

“Not surprising the point. And it is right because the role played by the IAIP should be fundamental to ensure that there is no corruption. But the work we have documented shows that IAIP is playing a role against the prevention of corruption and strengthening transparency,” said Eduardo Escobar, director of Acción Ciudadana.

Meanwhile, Jessica Estrada, director of Transparancia at FUNDE, considered that “the lack of transparency, information, accountability, is a credit for corruption to occur.”

This article has been translated from the original which first appeared in La Prensa Grafica