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.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Lobo "WIlling" To Talk To Zelaya

Porfirio Lobo Sosa stated today that he was willing to talk to Manuel Zelaya in the Dominican Republic, or in the Brazilian embassy, or wherever, in search of a solution to the political crisis in Honduras.
"There is the total and absolute will to talk, but what is lacking is to see a way that the actual authorities [the de facto government] aid and facilitate, in what is possible....the exit of Manuel Zelaya so that I can go talk with him wherever, I have no problem....but we leave it to the authorities to resolve...the administrative decision on how he will leave is not in my hands."
He later added:
"The leaving of ex-President Zelaya is not in my hands; this depends on the Honduran authorities, and as is logical, I will do all that I can to the extent that I can to influence so that they do what most suits the national interest....I am the president of the Hondurans, that they elected the last Sunday in November, and I have to be careful to not act irresponsibly."
Lobo will do "what he can" but no promises since everything depends on the de facto government. Remember first that Lobo Sosa supports the coup, and therefore acknowledges the legitimacy of the de facto government, however much it stands in his way. Micheletti has little reason to cooperate with Lobo Sosa; they are of different political parties. Lobo's own Nationalist Party introduced the resolution in Congress to reaffirm the Congressional decree where Congress removed Zelaya from office, without the constitutional authority to do so; the coup redux if you will. He can call for those things that he has that will make international recognition possible, but he cannot make them happen, even within his own party.

All of this adds up to little room to maneuver for Lobo Sosa. He's fairly powerless in the current situation, and will not have much more power come January 27. The time in which he could have acted was prior to the November elections, when his leadership towards a resolution of this problem would have meant something, but that would have put his election at risk. Now his only choice is to be a powerless president, as his statements and actions continue to demonstrate. He's stuck with whatever shell of an economy Micheletti leaves him, without a guarantee of international recognition beyond a few countries, a weak position as president-elect and likely an even weaker president.

Update 9:15 AM PDT: Lobo Sosa made it clear this morning that his only roll is to "suggest" what needs to happen, not to make it happen.
"The only thing that remains for me is to suggest or ask that they facilitate the talk that is important for Honduras, to end this thing once and for all, to not begin this new government trapped in this problem."
Dear Porfirio Lobo Sosa, do you really think Micheletti is going to make it happen, to resolve the problem for you? I don't.


Nell said...

It seems like an important moment to review who the people are with real power in Honduras.

What immunizes them from the onrushing economic collapse? Who among them is being supported by income that comes from outside the official economy?

John (Juan) Donaghy said...

An area not well researched - for reasons of survival, I'd guess - is the role of the drug cartels in the crisis. Mayors connected with drug-trafficking or who are drug-traffickers have been elected in at least some areas of Honduras.

RAJ said...

Drug trafficking clearly is one source of capital that continues to flow into the country and support a network of people, despite everything else.

But we also need to remain aware of the fact that some of the business elites likely have long maintained funds outside the country, accounts that activists called for freezing with no response.

And finally, while the country's economy may collapse, we would again point out that on Sunday June 28, in addition to declaring an illegal "succession" in the presidency, the Congress approved a number of contracts, and since that time has continued to approve contracts, for businesses in the country that are directly owned by the small wealthy elite. This constitutes a transfer of wealth from the country to private hands, and we continue to think this kind of economic transfer was one of the motivations for a coup so close to the end of the presidential term.