Responses to the Coup d'etat in Honduras on Sunday June 28, with special emphasis on producing English-language versions of commentaries by Honduran scholars and editorial writers and addressing the confusion encouraged by lack of basic knowledge about Honduras.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Devil In The Details

Thomas Shannon wasn't kidding when he said, "The implementation of this agreement will be difficult and will require the collaboration of the international community." But to bring us up to date, the full accord is signed and in effect, a calendar of events agreed to, and the process is underway. The details, however, have not been publically released.

The OAS will coordinate the formation of a verification commission over the next several days, and it will consist of two representatives of the OAS, and one delegate from each party to the agreement. A government of National Unity will be worked on next weeek. The troubling question, for which no schedule was set, is the work of Congress to decide whether or not Zelaya is restored to power.

The agreement was hand carried to Congress, but because it is in recess, it was received as "normal mail" by the sargeant at arms. Congress will have to be called back to a special session, and Jose Alfredo Saavedra, president of Congress, said he will not have his schedule dictated. Victor Rico, of the OAS, said "I am sure that the Congress have full commprehension of the urgency and importance of these determinations and I hope they will do them in the shortest time possible.

Saavedra said that once the agreement reaches Congress, he will need to call a meeting of the leadership of the political parties so that they can know the full contents of the agreement and decide how to proceed. The decision will be issued as a decree.


John (Juan) Donaghy said...

My concern is that there may be so many delays that the people's hopes for a resolution and a return to constitutional rule will be frustrated again by all sorts of tactics.
The people I know want to get on with dealing with real practical concerns - the current drought being one of the most serious. Many also see the need for major constitutional reform since the coup may have revealed the problems of the current constitution.

rns said...

Its my concern as well. It will be up to the international community, and especially the verification commission, to keep things on course and in line. This is not a time to celbrate, because the hard parts have not been accomplished yet. All that happened is that a mechanism for how to proceed was agreed to.

TITO said...

According to Javier Francisco Hall (Liberal Party/Yoro), 10 deputies can summon Congress to a extraordinary session, and that some deputies in resistance are already traveling to Tegucigalpa so that the issues in the session that deposed Zelaya do not repeat. Also, there are more 10 deputies in resistance making this extraordinary session almost impossible to delay! However, the Constitution does not state it that way, see Article 190, where Congress can be summon by: (1) Executive branch, (2) The permanent directory, and (3) Simple majority (half plus one) of the deputies.

RAJ said...

RNS confirms that the procedural rules of Congress actually do say this. That is, in addition to the ways the Constitution explicitly outlines, Congress has defined a standard for calling a special session with a small number of delegates. Special sessions have to be called for specific business and cannot take up other business.

La Piedra Libre said...

Full text of the agreement has been posted on the El Tiempo website...anyone able to do a translation?

Nell said...

Thanks to you all for the information about convening Congress. I pointed to this discussion in response to the item at Adrienne Pine's, an Al Jazeera story in which Corrales is saying nothing will happen before the election because Congress is in session.

Given that the text of the agreement, which includes a timetable, is now public (in Tiempo and probably elsewhere), Just how stupid does he think the rest of us are? Don't answer that.

rns said...

At this point I cannot find confirmation that 10 diputados can call Congress into an extraordinary session even though I do remember reading that somewhere. I have checked both the Constitution and the Reglamento Interno of Congress, and the Manual for Diputados.

An extraordinary session can be convened by the President of the Republic, the executive council of the Congress, or one half plus one diputados. It can only deal with issues that were in the call to session.

Article 191 says "5 diputados can convene an extraordinary session of the National Congress in any part of the Republic when the Executive, other authority, force, or fortuitous cause impedes the installation or celebration of its sessions."

Could that be what they are referring to?

rns said...

Thanks Piedra Libre; we were already working on the translation.

Here is the translation of the Tegucigalpa-San Jose Accord.