San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Ombudsman Sues Legislative Assembly

OMBUDSMAN José ManuelEchandi has filed a legal complaintagainst the Legislative Assembly becauseof legislators’ delay in passing laws relatedto a constitutional reform that givesthe public more voting power.According to the lawsuit, submitted tothe Constitutional Chamber of theSupreme Court (Sala IV), the assemblyviolated the Constitution by not complyingwith a one-year limit for passing certainlaws related to a constitutionalreform in May 2002 to create a referendumso voters can decide on certain political,administrative or economic issues.Assembly president Gerardo Gonzálezsaid the delay is because of the large numberof bills before lawmakers – more than700 – and the multi-partisan in makeup ofthe assembly, which slows debate.

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