AMERICA/COLOMBIA - Disappointment of the Bishops before the reform of justice

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Bogota (Agenzia Fides) - The Episcopal Conference, through the Office for relations with the State, has negatively assessed the procedures for approval of the reform of justice and called on members of Congress who participated in this work to take political responsibility .
"The Bishops have repeatedly invited the representatives of various public authorities to favor a climate of dialogue so that the reform of justice would be the result of consensus" underlined Father Pedro Mercat Cepeda, Adjunct Secretary of the Episcopal Conference, in charge of relations with the State. At the same time he recalled that "the main purpose of the reform should be to establish a rapid and effective justice, able to safeguard the rights and interests of all citizens, especially the poorest and most disadvantaged"
The Colombian Bishops believe that the text approved by Congress presents unrelated themes to the authentic and the general welfare of the Colombian people. In the text sent to Fides Agency says that, in their opinion, "the Reform contains measures that weaken criminal and disciplinary controls and decision-making power of those present at the Congress." Besides there was no consensus on various matters, among public authorities; it contains provisions concerning the principle of separation of powers, such as autonomy and independence of the judiciary, in particular concerning self-government, administrative, technical, planning and budgeting. Finally, not much attention was obtained from the legislator, the measures to make justice in Colombia more rapid and effective, the primary purpose of the Reform.
The Episcopate asks the main public authorities to assume their political responsibility towards Colombian people. "The seriousness of what has happened must urge our leaders to act with more rigor and political respect for the Constitution. In addition it makes public opinion become aware of the urgent need to take a more participatory role regarding the decisions of the State" the statement concludes. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 27/6/2012)