Tuesday 12th March 2024.

March 11, 2024


Myrna Ortega , who two weeks ago had been announced as spokesperson for José Raúl Mulino , the now presidential candidate of the Realizing Goals (RM) and Alianza parties , announced this Monday that she resigned from the position.

“They were the most horrible two weeks of my life,” is how Ortega summed up het experience in the campaign, with a broken voice, in a telephone conversation with La Prensa. “Everyone there is dirty ,” she added.

She maintains that one of the main reasons why she decided to leave was because her “values” do not allow her to support the cause of former president and whitewasher Ricardo Martinelli , whom Mulino replaced as presidential candidate for the elections on May 5.

In a tweet posted this Monday, March 11, 2024, at 8:27 am, Ortega referred to Martinelli as “corrupt.” Then, in the afternoon, she deleted that message.

In her story to La Prensa, the communicator stressed that for several days she thought about the decision she would make and what she “saw.”

“Look, I saw terrible people there, really terrible people. I know that all this is going to cause problems for me, but I have to tell the truth. Look, I’ve had three, four days thinking about what I was going to say, what I was going to do,” she said.

Ortega mentioned that Martinelli’s sons (Ricardo Alberto and Luis Enrique), as well as the former director of the Tourism Authority, Salomón Shamah , have recently been linked to Mulino’s campaign.

When asked if he saw anything bad related to these people, he responded: “Not like seeing something bad, but they did talk about a dirty campaign. “It was a horrible thing.”

She also noted that she previously consulted her decision with several fellow communicators. Everyone recommended he resign. She even raised his discomfort with Mulino, but he did not say anything about it.

“I feel that he [Mulino] is a good candidate… But it is a dirty campaign,” she said.

As to how she was feeling in the last few days?

“It’s a terrible thing. I couldn’t even sleep. But I cannot continue supporting a candidate who lives in those conditions,” Ortega concluded.

The Realizing Goals party (RM) has not reacted with indifference to the revelations of Myrna Ortega, who until now was the campaign spokesperson for José Raúl Mulino , the presidential candidate of that group.  The answer was immediate. Both Luis Eduardo Camacho and Astrid Salazar, spokespersons for Martinelli, maintain that Ortega faces “personal” problems and that is why her words have no credibility. Salazar even advised Ortega to seek “professional” help.

When Ortega read Astrid’s message in X, she wrote a response: “A rat.”

Marta de Martinelli wrote in X that Ortega was a “liar” and that they had not seen each other for years.

Ortega’s words are the latest bombshell in a party that in recent weeks has seen how its presidential candidate barricaded himself in an embassy (that of Nicaragua), is subject to an arrest warrant and was indefinitely and permanently disqualified from participating. in the elections of May 5, when his sentence of 128 months in prison for money laundering became final. In the midst of this maelstrom, Mulino, who until then was the vice president of the list he headed, remained as the main candidate.

“The satanic call center has already been activated to destroy Myrna Ortega,” said journalist Álvaro Álvarado , in his account on the social network X (formerly Twitter). Alvarado asked Mulino to comment on the issue. Until now, the candidate has remained strictly silent.

Felix Moulanier , who was RM’s national political coordinator, also expressed his solidarity with Ortega.

Moulanier knows how RM is handled internally and last year he even said that there was a call center to attack those people “who oppose Ricardo.”

The presidential candidate Melitón Arrocha went this Monday to the headquarters of the Electoral Tribunal , to present in writing his “irrevocable” and voluntary resignation from the electoral criminal jurisdiction .

“We are all equal before the law. We all have to be accountable for our actions and there can be no privilege. We have to restore the trust of the Panamanian people in their institutions,” Arrocha said.

Some journalists who were summoned to the scene by Arrocha’s campaign team said they thought he was going to give up his candidacy.

“To resign!?… I am committed to the Panamanian people and on May 5 we are going to win the election,” Arrocha exclaimed.

But he was not the first: in the presidential debate held on February 26, candidate Ricardo Lombana announced that he had renounced the electoral criminal law and invited his rivals to emulate him.

Arrocha competes for the free nomination, but is also nominated by the País party. Lombana is the candidate of the Another Path Movement.

The presidential candidates will meet again in the second presidential debate, which will be held on March 13. It will be the first with José Raúl Mulino , new standard bearer of the Realizing Goals (RM) party, although it is not known if he will attend the event.

The Urban and Home Cleaning Authority (AAUD) reported that the fire that has been recorded since this morning in the Cerro Patacón landfill was intentionally set.

Agents from the Panama Fire Department and other security forces tried early to extinguish the fire.

“As in previous cases of accidents, there is a criminal hand in this fire,” is reflected in a statement released by the entity. “Four different points have been detected where the fire occurred , which is classified as a criminal act.”

The AAUD announced that the competent authorities will be asked to carry out the required investigations to find those responsible for these events.

The emergency call was received by firefighters around 2:30 am this Monday and the work to put out the incident continues. “It started in a large area at the top of the hill,” said Ángel Delgado of the Panama Fire Department. “More personnel from the San Miguelito, Carrasquilla and Calidonia stations were activated,” explained Ángel Delgado, from the Fire Department.

From early on the smoke, spread by the strong breeze, covered several points of the capital city.

The United States Embassy in Panama announced this Monday a donation of material worth more than $500,000 for migrants and communities affected by the migration crisis through the Darién jungle , the natural border between the Central American country and Colombia.

The American donation valued at more than half a million dollars consisted of camping tents, cots, sheets and mosquito nets, according to official information from the United States, regarding the contribution that occurs after the damage caused in a migration center following altercations. .

Thus, “in the last three years, we have already contributed more than 43 million dollars to the immigration challenges here in the country. This is a commitment and a shared burden, that is why we are going to continue with it,” the Minister Counselor of the United States Embassy in Panama, John Barrett , told reporters .

Despite having a staff of about 1,300 officials, the Land Transit and Transportation Authority (ATTT) will hire a company to be in charge of collecting its collection and its delinquent portfolio.

According to the Panama Compra portal, the entity called a tender for $3.7 million in order to acquire the management and collection service for the collection and the delinquent portfolio, which exceeds $20 million.

According to the specifications, the company that is contracted will provide the service for five years at a rate of $750 thousand each year.

As part of the justification for carrying out this public act, the ATTT indicates in the statement of objections that the institution intends to improve the operation and processes in the units to obtain an increase in its own income and reduce existing delinquencies.

In fact, in a note from the ATTT board of directors to support the contracting, it is indicated that the institution does not have “specialized” personnel in accounts receivable.


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