Wednesday 8 February 2023

President and Ministers investigated for closure of Parque Viva

Rodrigo Chaves, Joselyn Chacón and Luis Amador are being investigated

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8 February 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – Costa Rica’s President, Rodrigo Chaves, and two of his minister, Jocelyn Chacón (Health) and Luis Amador (Public Works and Transport) are being investigated by the Prosecutor’s Office (Fiscalía) for the alleged crime of malfeasance.

The entertainment complex Parque Viva is owned by Grupo Nacion

The process is related to the alleged anomalous closure of Parque Viva, after the resolution they issued for the temporary suspension of the operating permit for Parque Viva, an entertainment complex owned by Grupo Nacion.

According to a report by Teletica, the investigation analyzes whether said decision was made based on false facts.

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“With data provided by the Attorney General’s Office, on October 24, I inform you that, within case 22-000049-0033-PE, there is an investigation against the persons of interest, for the alleged crime of prevarication. According to the information provided by the Attorney General’s Office, issues related to Parque Viva are being investigated,” the prosecutor’s office told the media.

The Fiscalía, in addition, said it is reviewing the actions of two other people who are not members of the Government.

Prevarication has to do with dictating resolutions contrary to the law, based on false facts, sanctioned with prison sentences of between two to six years in prison. Aggravating circumstances could increase the sentence from three to 15 years.

Days before, on October 21, the magistrates of the Constitutional Court (or Sala IV as it is also referred to), based on an appeal filed by a group of reporters of the newspaper La Nacion, including its director, Armando González, indicated an indirect affectation to the newspaper due to the closure of the amphitheater and ordered its reopening.

The magistrates concluded that with the closure there was an indirect violation of freedom of expression, given the threats that said decision generated.

In their resolution, the Sala IV stated that the decision was taken “in defense of freedom of the press, which is an essential pillar of any democracy.”

Closing of the  Parque Viva

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At the beginning of July, the Chaves government closed Parque Viva, alleging security problems, mainly in the issuance of permits to the detriment of the residents of the area.

Based on an anonymous complaint, the Ministry of Health made the decision to temporarily suspend the operating permit of the Parque Viva, justifying that when they held events, road congestion occurred.

The provision was made, according to the Government, by recommendations of the National Emergency Commission, the Ministry of Public Works and Transportation, the Red Cross and the Fire Department.

However, these technical reports reached the Ministry of Health days after the said resolution was issued.

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On that occasion, the Ministry of Health indicated that the measure was fulfilled by addressing “complaints and reports” of the enormous dams generated by events such as concerts in La Guácima de Alajuela and the possibility of accidents or emergencies.




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