Monday 15th August 2022.

August 15, 2022


The National Union of Pharmacy Owners (Unprofa) declared that at least 450 small pharmacies throughout the country will not open their doors this Monday, August 15, rejecting the 30% discount on 170 medications. The owners of small and medium-sized pharmacies ask that Executive Decree No. 17 of August 10, 2022 be modified, which set 30% discounts on the price of 170 medicines, starting Monday, August 15. Unprofa mentioned as an example that if you buy a medicine for one dollar and sell it for one dollar and 40 hundredths, with the provisions of Executive Decree No. 17, you would have to sell it to a retiree for 79 hundredths, for which you would lose 21% with each sale. According to the union, dozens of Panamanians will be affected by this measure, who will not be able to acquire their medicines.

The so-called single dialogue table for Panama agreed, at 12:25 pm on Sunday, to declare a dissent on point five of the agreed agenda on “the reduction of energy.” Representatives of the Executive and members of social groups resumed, starting at 9:20 am, the discussion on this topic, which had already been debated previously. Jorge Rivera Staff, National Secretariat of Energy, read at the table a proposal that seeks –among other aspects– to ask the distribution companies, through the regulator (in this case the Public Services Authority), to submit a plan within 30 calendar days. Said plan would allow, in the short term, to take actions so that clients within its concession area receive electricity supply “under the established quality standards,” Staff pointed out. However, throughout the discussion, the representatives of the social groups pointed that they were within that dialogue table because the Panamanian people are asking for a reduction in the electricity rate. In this regard, Staff reiterated that customers who consume up to 300 kilowatt hours per month already have a 50% reduction in their rate. The official added that Panama is among the four lowest electricity rates in Latin America. The union leader Saúl Méndez said that the Government’s position is that “what it is, is what it is”, in relation to the rate and that is where “the underlying problem” lies with the discussion of this point. “I find it very difficult to reach consensus on accessories and not on essentials,” said Eduardo Gil, of the Alianza Pueblo Unidos por la Vida.

Controlling food prices or forcing discounts on medicines will not only increase citizen discomfort in the short term, because it is unsustainable, but it will deepen the needs of the country. This, because it will cause the closure of more businesses, and increasing unemployment. This was stated this Sunday by the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama (Cciap), referring to the measures adopted by the Executive in recent weeks. These are executive decree No.16, which establishes the maximum gross marketing margin for some imported products that make up the basic food basket, and executive decree No.17, which creates the “Panama Products” program, whose objective is to make available national products, at a discount price by the Institute of Agricultural Marketing. Both decrees are from July 26, 2022. And more recently, executive decree 17 of August 10, 2022 was published in the Official Gazette , which set 30% discounts on the price of 170 medicines.

Gerardo Solis

Abdiel González, the lawyer who on January 21, 2022 denounced Comptroller Gerardo Solís for the alleged omission of his duties as a public servant, appeared this Friday, at the entity’s headquarters to find out the status of the investigation. According to González, Solís failed to comply with his work of supervising the mobilization expenses assigned to the mayor of Arraiján Rolling Rodríguez and the eight councilors of that district. He specifically asked to review the use of one million dollars during the years 2020 and 2021. In the Public Ministry, according to González, they informed him that they could not show him the folder because it is “in reserve”. However, they told him that the process is still active.

José Luis Fábrega

Submitting an application to revoke the mandate of any popularly elected authority is easy. The difficult thing, however, is to comply with the two phases of the process: the collection of signatures and the referendum. Precisely, in the first phase was the recall process against the mayor of the district of Panama, José Luis Fábrega. There are four days left until the 120-day period for collecting signatures expires on Thursday, August 18, and the 198,920 signatures that are required to enable the call for the referendum still do not exist. As of now, according to the latest report from the Electoral Tribunal (TE), dated August 8, 17,694 signatures have been collected, representing 8.9% of the 198,920 required. So, 181 thousand 226 signatures are missing.

The judge of guarantees of the first judicial circuit of Panama, Mike Zúñiga, decreed the precautionary measure of provisional detention for two citizens, who were charged with the alleged commission of the crime against life and personal integrity in the modality of aggravated intentional homicide and against collective security in the form of illicit association. This case has to do with the murder of a man, on the afternoon of last Friday, August 12, 2022, in a restaurant located in Albrook, district of Ancón.

The mother and stepfather of an 11-month-old baby were sentenced to 30 years in prison for the crimes of aggravated homicide and mistreatment, the Public Ministry reported this Saturday. At the hearing, the prosecutors of Homicide and Femicide of Oeste Panama, Sherly Barría and Jennifer Bethancourt, managed to get the judge of guarantees, Yorlenis Rodríguez, to legalize the arrests, consider the imputation of charges presented and dictate the sentence after a sentence agreement . The couple who lived in the Las Veraneras sector, in the Arraiján district, were found guilty and sentenced to 27 years in prison for homicide and 3 years for child abuse.

Panamanian Jean Carlos “Oli” González won a silver medal at the Pan-American surfing tournament (PASA Panama 2022 Games), which ended this Saturday, August 13, at Venao beach, in Pedasí, Los Santos province. González, with a score of 13.40, won the silver medal in the Open Men category.The gold went to the Brazilian Mateus Sena with a score of 13.76; the bronze went to Lucca Mesinas from Peru with 13.37, and the copper medal was obtained by the Peruvian Miguel Tudela with 12.03 points. After his triumph González assured that it was thanks to the effort of his team and many hours of work.

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