Guatemala; Thousands march against the president
Several thousand Guatemalans turned out on Saturday (May 16) to protest against the government of President Otto Perez following a corruption scandal that led to the vice president resigning. Sunday’s protest came after Roxana Baldetti resigned her post last week to face an investigation by authorities over allegations she was involved in a customs corruption racket.
“For me it is something extraordinary that the people protest in such a way. I am a retired teacher and the truth is that I am amazed by how animated this is. The people today are saying ‘no more corruption,'” said Fredy Frankie, a retired teacher who took part in the protest. Another protester, Alberto Gomez, said President Perez was not fit to govern. “He is incapable, he is mediocre, he does not have the ability to govern, and we want them to go to hell, and this movement will continue,” said Gomez, a retiree. The Guatemalan Congress on Thursday voted in Alejandro Maldonado as the country’s new vice president. Baldetti has denied any wrongdoing. Baldetti was elected in 2011 with Perez Molina, a former general who served the army during the country’s 1960-1996 civil war. Their Patriot Party has been hurt by the scandal ahead of a presidential election due in September.