March for human rights in Panama
Líderes sindicales y de gremios docentes demandaron este viernes que el Estado panameño cumpla con lo consignado en la Declaración Universal de los Derechos Humanos y garantice derechos básicos como educación, vivienda, salud, alimento y trabajo https://t.co/fyZOXr4ZTG pic.twitter.com/vb33ybdytH— La Estrella | Panamá (@EstrellaOnline) December 11, 2021
On 10th December 2021, International Human Rights Day, civil society groups marched in Panama city to demand respect for human rights. The “Marcha del Pueblo Unido” (“United People’s March”) was joined by members of labour unions and social movements, who called for policies to improve the minimum wage, and to increase employment, access to education and health. On a related note, Panama’s Ombudsperson, Eduardo Leblanc González, said in December 2021 that complaints of human rights violations received by his office had increased 100 percent during the year. He argued that the country faces important social problems, such as poverty, inequalities, discrimination, lack of access to health, insecurity and gender inequality.
El @fperiodistaspma se declara a partir de este momento en sesión permanente, a la espera de las disculpas y retractación del presidente de la Asamblea Nacional, @crispianoadames , por sus declaraciones aseverando que el narcotráfico se ha infiltrado en los medios de comunicación pic.twitter.com/YWdnrUVKjL— Fórumdeperiodistas (@fperiodistaspma) November 16, 2021
On 15th November 2021, Crispiano Adames, the president of the National Assembly and deputy of ruling party Partido Revolucionario Democrático (PRD), said at a press conference that narcotrafficking had infiltrated politics, media, businesses and other entities. On the following day, press associations Fórum de Periodistas, Consejo Nacional de Periodismo and Colegio Nacional de Periodistas (Conape) demanded a retraction and apology from Adames. Fórum de Periodistas president Alejandra Araúz said the legislator’s comments were “concerning” and “unacceptable.” Conape president Gricelda Esther Melo also commented:
“If they have the evidence that drug trafficking has infiltrated the media, what any citizen should do is make a formal complaint to the competent authorities so that they can investigate.”
In a statement, Adames said his intention was not to “involve, accuse or single out any sector of society as a participant in organised crime.” The deputy also invited media representatives to join a “national dialogue” seeking solutions to prevent infiltration of organised crime.