Hoy me haré eco de éste estupendo ensayo (originalmente en inglés, idioma en el que creo que realmente se han contado muy pocas verdades sobre lo acaecido en Honduras desde el 28 de junio) que complementa el anterior texto, también del Dr. D. Carlos Alvarado Gálvez, que se recoge en éste mismo blog bajo su título original "Un análisis sereno de la situación en Honduras":
Dear friends around the world:
After a long pause, I feel the impulse to conclude the ideas exposed in my previous essay “A dispassionate analysis of the Honduran situation” Briefly, I pointed out that what happened in Honduras the past June 28, wasn’t a typical “coup d’ ètat” because the Constitution continued to be the Law of the Land; and moreover, the Congress and the Supreme Court of Justice continued in place.
It doesn’t mean that what happened in that date was a normal constitutional process; but one has to take in account the series of events that lead to that fateful day: A President that didn’t fulfill his duties, he even failed to send to Congress the National Budget for its approval, in a move that can be constructed as attempt to deprive the Supreme Electoral Court of the necessary resources to carry on the electoral process scheduled for the end of 2009; and at the same time pretending to carry on a referendum on whether to change –among other things- the constitutional prohibition of presidential re-election, a process that was forbidden for both the Supreme Court and the Office of the General Prosecutor.
So, we have now all the ingredients for a conflict to occur between the Executive Power on one side, and the Legislative and Judicial Powers on the other, without the legal procedure in place to settle it (i.e. an impeachment process in Congress) This led to the explosive situation of June 28, with the destitution of President Manuel Zelaya by the Congress, hours after he was exiled from the country by the armed forces acting under a legal order from a judge. The first fact had a legal basis: Article 239 of the Honduran Constitution forbade that any citizen that occupies the head of the Executive Branch could not be President or President Designate again. The second didn’t, nobody can be exiled or deprived of his/her nationality according to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
As a consequence, a confrontation occurred in Honduras, where most of the population favored the change that took place, but with a significant minority making a very strong opposition. All this escalates very quickly to the international stage, where most of the nations initially see the events of the end of June as an old fashioned military coup against the legally constituted authorities, and therefore tried to isolate and apply political and economical pressure on the new government with the aim of restoring the ousted president. Almost immediately, this complex political situation was translated to the ideological sphere, where what can be called the Old Left, which its strong element of Marxist theory about the “manifest destiny” of societies to be ruled by one political party, vocally presented Mr. Zelaya as a modern martyr. It took more than four months for the truth about the reality on Honduras to permeate to the international scene, so the application of full sanctions as called by countries like Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua and Bolivia can be avoided. In the meantime, the electoral process initiated in November 2008 with the nomination of presidential, congress and city council ‘s candidates was strongly backed by the authorities of the new Executive Branch as well by the Congress, according to the Constitution. This election however, was called by the people who favored Mr. Zelaya not only as “illegal and tainted by the oppressed force of the army” but also subject to a campaign of destruction of electoral propaganda, the threat of the use of force against those who dare to vote and even carried out the detonation of several bombs that fortunately only produced limited material damage.
On November 29, under an ambient of uncertainty, the general elections took place, with the benefit of the direct surveillance of about 600 international observers and hundreds of members of the international press. More than four and a half millions citizens over the age of 18 years are inscribed in the National Registry of Persons, although it is estimated that a little more of a million live abroad. In what has been called unanimously by the observers and the international press as a free and fair process, more than two millions seven hundred thousand citizens casted their vote; they represent more than 61% of the people in the National Registry and more than 75% of those who actually live in the country, truly a glorious day for Honduras. As a result, a new President was elected with more than 52% of the ballots, a clear mandate, and a strong message from the people of Honduras; who by casting a vote have declared its firm desire to live in democracy and to leave the past behind, a past composed not only of the intention of Zelaya to illegally change the Constitution, but also of the lack of a real access to the decision making process, a reasonable and honest working government composed by the best element in society without regard to political affiliations; and much better wealth distribution, that raise people of poverty by means of better production and income, and better access to infrastructure, educational and health services.
What lessons should be derived of this complex and difficult situation? And, specifically what can be done to avoid the painful repetition of circumstances like those experienced in Honduras? By now it should be clear that the origins of these troubles arise from the entrenched poverty and the lack of strong legal institutions that enforce the rule of law. These are characteristics of underdeveloped countries like Honduras, and the lessons learned would be helpful to the international community; those lessons are:
1. The necessity to encourage and to support the development of education in democracy and respect of the law; from basic to graduate level.
2. The necessity to develop healthy and powerful control and balance mechanisms inside the governments to avoid abuses by the authorities; at the same time that a strong system of democratic elections at all levels (local, regional and national government) is taking place. An integral part must be the implementation of a system that allows the common citizen and to non-governmental organizations to denounce alleged injustices and to have a follow-up of their grievances.
3. Both, the governments of developed countries and international organizations must tie the resources they destined to international cooperation to an efficient use of it, destining part of the funds in the monitoring of its proper use. Moreover, they must clearly establish that the lack of strong democratic institutions and an accountability system for the combat of corruption are indispensable requisites for the resources of international cooperation at a level above humanitarian help in case of hunger, war or natural disasters.
4. The indexes to measure the progress being made by all nations, like the Human Development Index of the United Nations Development Fund, should incorporate measurements of democratic development, because it is against reason that democratic countries like Chile or Costa Rica are equated in their level of human development with nations with autocratic regimens like Cuba.
Only bringing into being the above mentioned measures will prevent the repetition of near tragedies like the one lived by Honduras; and assure the World that the Honduran experience will not lead to the development of the theory of the “soft “ or “good” coup d’ ètat to address supposed injustices in which incurred the authorities of any nation.
Dr. Carlos Alvarado-GálvezTegucigalpa, 30-11-2009