For the country to move forward the endemic violence linked to gang activity and government corruption needs to be challenged and people held to account. Recently the former Honduras President Rafael Callejas pleaded guilty in the US to bribery and racketeering charges.
More recently Honduras’ national political party have proposed that the current president will be their candidate for the elections in 2017. President Juan Hernandez, of the conservative National Party, has not confirmed if he will run again but, at present there does not seem to be a credible opponent.
These are challenging times for the people of Honduras. The country’s Supreme Court has successfully removed a law that banned presidents from seeking a second term. This would allow President Hernandez to stand again.
Since President Hernandez took office in 2014 he has initiated a strong military offensive against drug traffickers and gangs. It has been reported that this has reduced the high homicide rate. However, there are many questions that are yet to be answered about alleged police brutality and corruption.
The people of Honduras do not want to see another fight over the presidential re-election which caused a political stand-off in 2009 that ended in a coup.
Open and transparent democracy must be allowed to flourish in Honduras and I welcome the planned elections in 2017. The international community must work closely with Honduras to help them build a blueprint that tackles the gang related issues and instills a prosperous democratic future for the next generation.