Inspector General appeals to overturn Petro’s protection against impeachment

Posted on May 20 2014 - 11:14pm by TNN
Gustavo Petro (Photo: Semana)

Colombia’s Inspector General’s Office has appealed a decision by a national court which temporarily blocks further rulings made against Bogota’s reinstated mayor Gustavo Petro, local media reported on Tuesday.

In the ongoing saga of Petro’s case, the Inspector General’s Office — which initially impeached the mayor and barred him from politics for 15 years — has put forward an appeal to overturn the decision by Colombia’s State Council which impedes any authority from following up on the ruling that originally led to the Mayor’s removal from office, Caracol Radio reported.

In the most recent appeal presented to the Second Section of the court, the Inspector General’s Office claimed that Magistrate Gerardo Arenas, who is in charge of studying Petro’s case, did not know the full disciplinary proceedings made against the mayor before ordering the temporary protection measure, El Heraldo Newspaper reported.

According to the Inspector General’s Office, the suspension of the ruling, which had already determined Petro’s removal from office, should be prohibited as it would allow the “existence of disciplinary impunity.”

MORE: Colombia state council blocks impeachment of Bogota mayor

Bogota’s mayor had been initially ordered to leave office by Inspector General Alejandro Ordoñez in December 2012 after “irregularities” had been found in the planning and transfer the city’s privatized garbage collection system into public hands.

This allegedly resulted in nearly 10,000 tons of uncollected garbage to be left on the streets of Colombia’s capital.

MORE: Colombia’s Inspector General dismisses Bogota mayor over trash collecting scandal

The ongoing case has seen the participation from not only the Inspector General’s Office, but also numerous state courts, Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos, and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).

Ignoring protective measures granted by the IACHR, President Santos signed off on Petro’s impeachment in March, but was forced to reinstate the mayor weeks later by a lower court in Colombia.

The latest appeal will be looked at the by the State Council over the next 20 days. However, due to the complexity of the case, the process is expected to take longer.

Sources

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