Local April 23, 2015 | 12:12 pm

Watchdog wants probe of Dominican Congress’ ‘bagman’

Santo Domingo.- The Justice and Transparency Foundation (FJT) on Thursday called on Justice minister Francisco Dominguez to probe the alleged presence of the "bagman" in Congress to bribe lawmakers into passing a constitutional amendment which paves the way for president Danilo Medina’s reelection.

The call by FJT president Trajano Vidal comes in response to complaints from opposition lawmakers that several officials have contacted legislators with the intent to bribe for votes to amend the Constitution.

"I don’t know what they’re offering, what I do know is that ministers are calling on lawmakers to try to bribe them," said opposition PRM party deputy Ramón Bueno.

Vidal also noted similar complaints by independent deputy Minou Tavarez Mirabal on Wednesday.

“Calls are being made offering certain prices, awarding government contracts and to guarantee candidacies," Tavarez was quoted as saying.

In a statement Vidal called the legislators’ serious allegations of grave concern. “But what’s even more disturbing is the degradation which Dominican Republic’s politics have succumbed to, leading to discredit political actions while delegitimizing the announced constitutional reform.”

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