Monday, April 24, 2017,
Santo Domingo, D.N.
This morning, the lawyers of the National Committee to Combat Climate Change, CNLCC, asked the plenarium of the Constitutional Court for the provisional and immediate suspension of all current activities of the commission created by Decree No. 6-17, including citations, interrogations and any other diligence to be considered as subverting the constitutional order of the Dominican Republic.
Also lawyers Dario Coronado and Euren Cuevas, in their statement before the Constitutional Court, requested that Decree 6-17 and its commission be declared non-compliant with the Constitution, as well as any action arising from it.
They linked the unconstitutionality of Decree 6-17 and the commission of notables formed under this provision, to the unconstitutionality of the use of coal to generate electricity.
They pointed out that article 67-3 of the Constitution establishes as a duty of the State to promote the use of non-polluting alternative energy and technology in the public and private sectors, and in article 67-5, prevention and control of environmental deterioration factors.
“It has been proven scientifically and to the point of satiety that coal as fuel is the most polluting and harmful to the environment and that it affects the health of plants, animals and humans. Of all the possible fuels, the State and CDEEE chose the worst of all: Coal, “they said.
They observed that other options with the same capacity were possible, for less than half the price, and with much cleaner fuel, but coal was chosen, despite the international commitments adopted by the Dominican Republic to reduce pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.
They ruled out that the commission created by Decree 6-17 had the faculty, capacity and willingness to examine the unconstitutionality of the use of coal and to investigate Odebrecht’s bribes, frauds, overvaluation and other illicit crimes in the construction of The Punta Catalina coal plants.
They defended the right to constitutional protection of citizenship within the framework of articles 68 and 69 of the Constitution on the guarantees of fundamental rights and effective judicial protection.
They argued that citizenship is directly affected by bribes, overvaluations and other crimes perpetrated in the construction of Punta Catalina coal plants that deplete state resources to provide quality basic services to the population.
They also mentioned that the violation of the separation and independence of the public powers weakens the guarantees of an effective Rule of Law.
Both lawyers stated that Decree 6-17 violates Article 4 of the Constitution that establishes the division and independence of public powers.
They pointed out that the commission of notables created by Decree 6-17 replaces and abrogates the functions of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which is the body of the justice system that directs the criminal investigation and exercises public action on behalf of society, according to Article 169 Of the Constitution.
They explained that this decree and the commission created by it stems from the fact that Odebrecht confessed on December 21 to judicial authorities in the US, Brazil and Switzerland that he had paid $ 92 million to Dominican officials to obtain the works Awarded between 2001 and 2014.
They affirmed that it is an investigation of a criminal act typified and punished by Law 448-06 on bribery in the commerce and in the investment, and therefore this investigation beholds a criminal character that is Â inherent to the Public Ministry.
They said that article 128 of the Constitution that is cited by the decree to justify the appointment of this commission, does not include the attribution of creating this type of commission or delegate to other bodies or figures investigative powers and control or control, own and to The jurisdictions already exist, including as constitutional bodies and other branches of government.
“The nullity of any law, decree, resolution, regulation or act contrary to the Constitution and those that alter or subvert the constitutional order are very clearly stated in articles 6 and 73 of the Constitution,” they clarified.
“Can we hope to obtain the recognition of a right in the last and highest tribunal of the Republic, the Constitutional Court, or are we alone at the mercy of the strength of our arms? Will we only have the resource to seek justice in the streets? “Asked Coronado and Cuevas.
The request for review of unconstitutionality is signed by Rafael Enrique de León Piña, Domingo A. Acevedo, David Montes De Oca, Carlos L. Sánchez Solimán, Dolores Paulino, Demetrio Turbí Ortíz, among others, all belonging to the National Committee to Combat Climate Change, CNLCC.
In addition to Coronado and Cuevas, lawyers Yovanny Díaz and Miguel Ferreras.formed part of the bar of the CNLCC.
Read the defense document before the Constitutional Court (Spanish only):
NATIONAL COMMITTEE ON COMBATING CLIMATE CHANGE, CNLCC
Enrique de Leon, spokesman for the National Committee to Combat Climate Change, CNLCC said that the direct action of unconstitutionality against the Punta Catalina commission, the body interposed on behalf of the thousands of people who are mobilizing in the Marchas Verdes (Green Walks) for the end of impunity.