Costa Rica President Luis Guillermo Solis denies any link to the “cementazo” corruption scandal that has resulted in the arrest of 7 people last week, six of which were high ranking officials of the State bank, Banco de Costa Rica (BCR).
Solis, in a video aired Tuesday night, despite allegations of legislator Victor Hugo Morales Zapata and reaffirmed that he never asked anyone to take any illegal action to break the duopoly in the cement market in the country and never authorized the use of his name in relation to the BCR loan.
“In that process, I never asked Victor Hugo Morales Zapata, or anyone else, to take any illegal action and I never promoted the specific interests of any company and never authorized anyone to improperly facilitate favors of any kind on my behalf …), ” Solis said in a video posted on his Facebook page.
The President recalled that his government made the decision to promote a public policy to break the duopoly that has dominated the cement market in the country, which generates high prices.
Solis said that his government’s action was to allow equal conditions for any company that wanted to compete in that market, a market held firmly by the Dutch firm Holcim and Cemex of Mexico.
In the center of the cementazo corruption scandal is businessman Juan Carlos Bolaños who sought and was granted a bank loan by the BCR, of more than US$30 million dollars, for the import of cement from China.
Last week, Bolaños and six officials of the BCR, including the banks General Manager who was under suspension for his in the loan and five others that include loan officers.
Bolaños is accused of embezzlement and influence peddling, among other charges, while the bank officials for embezzlement.
Solis expressed his satisfaction with the investigation. “I have given my full support to the ongoing investigations, essential to clarify what happened. In a democracy it is in the courts of justice and not in any other place, where the guilty party is punished and the innocent is freed,” he stressed.
The president said he was calm because “I have not ordered, propitiated, committed, or induced any act contrary to law.”
He said that his Presidency has acted respecting the duty of strong moral principles, honesty and decency and the rule of law, with the sole purpose of benefiting the greatest number of Costa Ricans, as well – he added- “he has acted and will continue to act so that the truth shines forth. All of the truth’.