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  • Guatemala's President-elect Alejandro Giammattei and outgoing Guatemala's President Jimmy Morales during a news conference in Guatemala City.

    Guatemala's President-elect Alejandro Giammattei and outgoing Guatemala's President Jimmy Morales during a news conference in Guatemala City. | Photo: Reuters

Published 27 August 2019

The CICIG will end its work and leave the Central American nation next Sept. 3, after outgoing President Jimmy Morales decided not to renew its mandate.

Right-wing Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei announced Monday that he is currently working on a proposal for the creation of a new anti-corruption body, which, “unlike the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), will collaborate with fixing the system.”

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International Commission Against Impunity Leaves Guatemala

"The corrupt will end up in jail, the commission will not only attack corruption but will also persecute the corrupt," he said in a press conference, adding he will be traveling to the United States to fine-tune his proposal and ask for financial support.

Giammattei explained that Guatemala will contribute up to US$5,000 to US$10,000 per year to finance the new commission. The amount of money will be obtained by restructuring several institutions, he stated. In addition to that, the new head of state said he was hoping he will obtain support from donor countries and international organizations.

When asked on what would be the difference between his proposal and the current work of the CICIG, Giammattei responded that "there are many different things [...] they [the CICIG] could not manage to change the system, the problem was not solved, corruption is still present in the country.”

The CICIG will end its work and leave the Central American nation next Sept. 3, after outgoing President Jimmy Morales decided not to renew its mandate.

The independent international body had been trying to investigate Morales for alleged corruption and embezzlement since at least August 2017 when the state’s attorney general uncovered evidence that Morales had received illicit campaign funds of up to US$1 million from private businesses for his 2015 electoral campaign.   

He stepped up his efforts las year vowing not to renew the CICIG mandate as the committee tried for a third time to strip his political immunity, protected by the pro-government Guatemalan Congress. The president claimed the commission had somehow “violated” national and international law.

On Aug. 23, the CICIG delivered more than a hundred reports to the public prosecutor's office, as part of the transfer of information. The documents include police, financial, criminal analysis, and forensic reports. 

The CICIG was created in 2006 on an agreement between the United Nations and the Guatemalan state to function as an oversight committee to prevent corruption and bring corruption cases to justice.

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