Bernal, Why the UN Development Program?

Linda Maguire, the UNDP functionary who would run the consultations about Panama’s constitution:
Q: What is your message to Americans about the importance of the UN?
LM: I would say fundamentally three key messages. The first would be that it’s our organization. The United States was a pivotal actor behind the creation of the United Nations, and I think it’s very important that we take ownership of the organization….

United Nations Development Program – for what?

by Miguel Antonio Bernal
Falsehood has wings and flies, and truth continues to crawl, so that when people realize the deception it is too late.
Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra      

Only five months ago, I was wondering in my weekly column: Why Reforms? Today, by autocratic decision of an executive at the service of the real power brokers who despise the citizens, the matter goes to a foreign organization: the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). It’s to keep the military constitution that was imposed on Panama in 1972.

Once again, they decide to impose reforms on the constitution without any true or meaningful citizen participation. Once again, they prefer to put themselves into the hands of those who lack political legitimacy to be mediators or facilitators of an issue that is essential and intrinsic to sovereign power. The source of sovereignty and legitimacy is the people, the citizenry which holds the power to create a constitution, the lords and ladies of the constituent power.

The militarist constitution — in force for almost 47 years — is living proof that, despite having been reformed four times, its patches have stripped it of neither its authoritarian barracks origins, nor of its essential opposition to citizen participation.

Approved in the Cabinet Council and in three debates of the National Assembly by “their” deputies, the executive now orders their bodyguards to strip themselves of their duties and transfers them to the anti-Panamanian UNDP bureaucrats.

We already know that the reforms sought by the PRD-UNDP team are not at all innovative, updating, explanatory or corrective.

It is necessary to reiterate that this is how they seek to reproduce an oligocracy dominated by kleptomaniacs who have no disposition to cede the control they maintain over political power. What matters the least to them is that we can achieve a democratic constitution and government, one that’s understood and perceived as coming from the constituent power of the people.

The Constitution that Panama requires for its rebirth cannot be considered rationally but it is based on a participatory constitutional process that allows the full exercise of citizen power: the constituent power.


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