Impact | Negative
Civicus Rating | Obstructed
On November 1, a Legislative Decree was published, approved by the National Congress on October 7, which reforms the Special Anti-Money Laundering Law and the Penal Code. Among the most controversial changes is the reform of Article 2 of the Special Law, which now includes within the definition of politically exposed persons (PEP) CSOs that “administer external cooperation funds” and that also engage in “research, evaluation or analysis of public administration”.
Civil society was quick to speak out against the reform. In particular, the Association for a More Just Society (ASJ in Spanish) issued a statement in which it described the decision as authoritarian and pointed out that “it goes against the constitutional principles of civil association, freedom of expression and citizen participation”. It also warned that if these actions are carried out without concerted reactions from other sectors, citizen actions against corruption would be easier to silence.
The reform, which is already in force, will be prosecuted by the ASJ through an appeal of unconstitutionality. To this end, they invited other actors and civil society organizations to join the lawsuit and to consolidate leadership committed to the fight against corruption.