Honduras: President-elect Xiomara Castro's party expels 18 deputies for treason

One week after the inauguration of the elected president of Honduras, Xiomara Castro, the coalition that brought her to the first magistracy had his first break in congress. Friday night ended with the expulsion of 18 deputies from the Libertad y Refundación (Libre) party. after the ad Castro called “the Honduran people and the militancy in general” to a massive mobilization on the ground floor of the National Congress (CN) prior to the session in which it will be defined whether Jorge Cálix, driven by the dissidence of the Libre, will remain at the head of the CN or if the coalition agreement that foresees Luis Redondo as head of the legislature will prevail. “From all corners of the country to the capital of Honduras”Castro specified.

18 deputies expelled from Libre

The chamber of the Honduran congress was the scene of a day of maximum tension with the installation of a Provisional Board of Directors that broke with the coalition agreement between the Free Party and the Salvador Party of Honduras (PSH) of former presidential candidate Salvador Nasralla, which had agreed to the appointment of Luis Redondo as head of the unicameral legislative body. But nevertheless, 21 deputies from the Libre party broke the agreement and allied themselves with the National party (rulerism defeated in the last elections) and the conservative wing of the Liberal party.

“The betrayal was consummated”Castro wrote on his Twitter account after the group of deputies did not show up for the scheduled meeting with the president-elect. and instead they negotiated with right-wing parties to bring Jorge Cálix to the presidency of the CN. Xiomara had summoned the 50 deputies of his party to ask them to support legislator Luis Redondo as president of the Legislative Assembly, Hugo Noé Pino as president, and Angélica Smith as secretary.

“The absence of the 20 deputies is the omen of a counterrevolutionary betrayal of the Honduran party and people that overthrew the narco-dictatorship (…) by imposing a plan by the corrupt elite led by (current president) Juan Orlando Hernández”, declared the president-elect after the meeting.

“They betrayed the mandate”

The tension increased at the moment in which the Minister of the Interior, Leonel Ayala, of the National party began the swearing-in and deputies from the Libre party rose to the board of directors to prevent the proclamation of the Provisional Board of Directors. The meeting ended in blows while members of the Libre party shouted “betrayal” and “Xiomara”. After a few minutes Calix fled the scene.

According the deputy of Libre, Rasel Tomé, Ayala “illegally gave the floor” to the deputies who “They betrayed the mandate that the people gave to Xiomara Castro,” he said quoted by the AFP agency. While Ayala assured that the election of Cálix was supported by 83 signatures, exceeding the 65 votes required, despite the fact that the pact of the winning coalition in the last elections sought to appoint Redondo.

“Risk of ungovernability”

For the analyst and professor at the National Autonomous University of Honduras, Eugenio Sosa, the arrival of Cálix to the presidency of the CN gives control to the PN. “He manages to maneuver and gain control of the National Congress”he told AFP. “There is a risk of ungovernability, of clashes of powers”, product “of a sinister amalgamation of organized crime (and) networks of corruption to maintain impunity”, he added.

The Honduran congress has 128 deputies: 50 from Libre, 10 from the PSH, 44 from the PN, 22 from the Liberal Party and two from two minority parties. At night, the court of honor of Libre defined the expulsion of the 21 dissident deputies for betraying the constitutional agreement Y “make alliances with representatives of organized crime, corruption and drug trafficking”, as Castro specified in his announcement, although At minute 90, three deputies repented and withdrew their support for the Provisional Board headed by deputies Jorge Cálix as president, Beatriz Valle as secretary, and Yahvé Sabillón as vice president..

“By acclamation we unanimously resolved and approved, in an extraordinary way, declaring the definitive expulsion of the dissident deputies,” Castro said after a meeting of his party called urgently. “From now on they lose their status as active members of our party,” he added.

The expelled deputies are: Jorge Cálix, Beatriz Valle, Denis Chirinos, Francis Cabrera, Mario Enrique Cálix, Mario Portillo, Samuel Madrid, Ronald Panchame, Ramón Soto, Marco Tinoco and Edgardo Castro, Frank Ramón Flores, Sergio Castellano, Germán Altamirano, Yahvé Sabillón, Marco Eliud Girón , Wilmer Cruz and Margarita Dabdoub Sikaffi.

Congress Mobilization

This Saturday a massive mobilization is expected in the basement of the CN in the run-up to the final session on January 23 where it will be defined if the former members of the Libre party, Jorge Cálix, Beatriz Valle and Yahvé Sabillón will integrate the Provisional Board or if the agreement will prevail agreed by the left coalition.

“Today I will be at the vigil on the ground floor of the National Congress, 6 pm,” Castro wrote on his Twitter account. “I order to stop the businesses of organized crime, corruption and drug trafficking that represent ‘Joh’ now within Libre to prevent the transformation of Honduras. I wait for you!” he added.

On January 27, the inauguration of the first female head of state in the history of Honduras will take place, Xiomara Castro, who was elected in one of the elections with the greatest participation of citizens. The victory of the coalition led by Libre comes to put an end to 12 years of rule by the National party noted for its links to drug trafficking.

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