Bukele is Creating a Political Crisis in El Salvador

Photo of Manuel Orozco at the Inter-American Dialogue Office EDH / Tomás Guevara

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Manuel Orozco spoke with El Diario de Hoy to discuss Nayib Bukele’s recent threat of self-coup in which he took control of the Legislative Assembly by using intimidation with the presence of the military and police, in addition to giving the legislature an ultimatum to align with his agenda.

Comments by Manuel Orozco:

“President Bukele violates at least three basic principles of democracy and even legal regulations within the country’s political system.”

“First, [his actions] ignore the presence of checks and balances for independent state powers. Second, he is using force as a mechanism to intimidate other government bodies of power. And thirdly, he is avoiding all forms of personal accountability.”

“Bukele has already given several signs that he wants to do things his own way, but things in his own way must be done within the prudential limits that the state allows, with respect to institutionalism. In this case, whether it be because of general ignorance or a lack of understanding of the political system, as head of state, he should have understood that this should not have been done.”

“Due to this scene, the chambers of commerce, of industries, have criticized the president and it is unfortunate because Bukele represented an opportunity for El Salvador to change its ways. This is an attempt to self-coup d’etat, wanting to intimidate the population – after all, the assembly is mostly of the opposition and that is the voice of the people too.”

“In a country like El Salvador that not only has a history of civil war, but a trajectory of cultural violence, with a the presence of armed gangs, this occurrence is very dangerous because everyone interprets it in their own way and what [Bukele] is doing, calling for an uprising, is basically creating an anarchic movement where even the executive branch can no longer have control over the monopoly of power.”

Read the full interview at ElSalvador.com