Honduras President Juan Orlando Hernandez said he is committed to battling corruption after his government ended the mandate of an anti-graft mission in the country backed by the Organization of American States. But is has led to a backlash because the public believe he is trying to avoid new, more effective corruption laws.
Writing on Twitter the day the mandate lapsed for the body known as the Fight Against Corruption and Impunity in Honduras (MACCIH), Hernandez said: “We confirm our steadfast desire to continue our fight against corruption and for transparency.”
The president, who critics accuse of undermining the rule of law in Honduras, added that his country would continue seeking support from international partners including the OAS, the United Nations, the European Union and others.
Lawmakers allied with Hernandez voted last year against retaining the MACCIH, which was formed in 2016. Around 800 people took to the streets of the capital Tegucigalpa on Sunday to demand Hernandez’s resignation and chanting: “We want the MACCIH.”
The demonstrators on the march felt without the anti-graft law, politicians would be free to do what they wanted with public funds. The record of Hernandez, an ally of the United States, has come under increasing scrutiny in recent months after his brother Antonio Hernandez was convicted in October in the US of drug-trafficking.