Local November 30, 2016 | 12:03 pm

Lawyer warns against declaring State of Emergency

Santo Domingo.- Prominent attorney NamphiRodríguez warned Wednesday that president Danilo Medina ‘s request to Congressto declare a national emergency, is a "temporary repeal of constitutionalorder" and would suppress the Constitution’s validity and civil rights.

The Constitutional Law professor andpresident of the Press and Law Foundation said Medina has other less controversialmeans to deal with the calamity in 14 provinces flooded by the recentdownpours. "Article of Public Contracts 6 Law 340 allows the President toextend an exemption to all government agencies from public tenders to expeditepurchases, construction of works and social aid, and thus response effectively witha simple Decree."

In a statement, the civil society representativesaid there’s no need at this time to suspend constitutional guarantees andfundamental rights in one part of the country.

Rodriguez said a state of constitutionalexception hasn’t been declared in decades, since it involves a serious act ofsuspension of rights such as freedom of expression, habeas corpus, freedom of movement,freedoms of association and assembly, and inviolability of the residence.

He noted that given the extreme gravity ofthe actions, if Congress authorizes declaring a state of emergency the UnitedNations and the Organization of American States (OAS ) must be notified of thecountry’s situation, in compliance with the convention on controls.

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