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A rotten PAN in Congress

Five deputies are accused of fraud for more than 300 thousand pesos

By La Orquesta

On Monday, members of the organization Ciudadanos Observando filed a complaint with the State Prosecutor’s Office of San Luis Potosí against deputies Mariano Niño and Josefina Salazar Báez for allegedly embezzlement of state resources.

“We were able to verify before the Tax Administration System (SAT) that invoices that were already collected on October 28, 2015 at the State Congress are already canceled by the supplier Angélica Peredo Gómez on February 29, 2016, this being a fraud” , they pointed out.

They assured that the verifications that the legislators used are not supported, so they should return the money and face the corresponding criminal process.

This denunciation is added to the one already presented against the congressmen Héctor Mendizábal Pérez, Enrique Flores Flores and Héctor Meráz, also of the PAN, for the same situation.

“The five deputies used the same consecutive invoices issued on the same date of October 28, 2015. It could be considered the crime of criminal association in addition to damaging public resources.”

They affirm that only in the month of October 2015, the five deputies present a damage for 327 thousand 458 pesos, which are specified below as follows:

* Mariano Niño: $ 75,596.00
* Josefina Salazar: $ 68,882.00
* Enrique Flores: $ 64,950.00
* Héctor Meráz: $ 59,552.00
* Héctor Mendizábal: $ 58, 478.00

MORE PROBLEMS  FOR ENRIQUE FLORES


The issue did not end there.. In addition to the indications coming from the citizen plane, there was also a movement at the institutional level. On monday, during a press conference at the Attorney General’s Office of the State (PGJE), the prosecutor specializing in crimes related to corruption, Jorge Vera Noyola, said that in the case that follows the deputy Enrique Flores Flores for the crime of bribery there are three other open investigations.

“The facts are being investigated, there are at least three other investigative files and if it is determined that there are elements to link someone, they will have to proceed”, said Vera Noyola, who was reserved during the event arguing that the PGJE does not want “Litigate the case in the media”.

It is worth mentioning that Flores Flores defense pointed out that the Office of the Attorney General made procedural errors in the request for his dismissal and the integration of the preliminary investigation to his involvement in the proceedings, which is why he intends that it should overturn the case against him and even establish responsibilities to the head of the dependency, Federico Garza Herrera.

In this regard, Vera concluded that “if there were no elements in the folder, it would not have been linked to the process.”

THE MARIANO NIÑO CASE

Jorge Vera Noyola himself said on Monday that Deputy Mariano Niño had already gone to the State Attorney General’s Office to testify about the accusations about his management of money “destined” for support to people who did not receive anything in reality. We know of at least five cases in this regard that have raised a great media uproar and that, so far, the blue and white legislature has not been able to clarify.

The most famous episode occurred at the end of 2016, when Marino Niño managed a support in groceries for 86 thousand pesos for a man from Ébano already deceased. This support was registered in a document signed also by the deputy Fernando Chávez Méndez (PRI) and the now deputy with license Enrique Flores (PAN).

The delirium reached greater tints in a document attached to the registers: a text of thanks supposedly signed by the beneficiary on December 19, 2016, something impossible given that he had died on October 11 of that same year.

Despite the documentary evidence, Marino Niño has chosen to divert the subject and point rather to a possible conspiracy against him.

“What they are looking for is to incriminate me”, was his response when he was questioned about the requests for gestoría approved by the Congress of the State that were, apparently, fraudulent.

The scandal was so great that even his own party asked the authorities for a thorough investigation. Alejandro Fernández Hernández, acting president of the National Steering Committee of the PAN, stated that the party wants the deputy Mariano Niño to be investigated for the use of public resources, and that the law be applied if he is found guilty.

Although the event came to light until 2018, it was not the first time that something similar was associated with Mariano Niño. In December of 2017, Óscar David Reyes Medrano denounced the deputy for identity theft and forgery of signatures of alleged beneficiaries of the resources managed before the Political Coordination Board (Jucopo).

Among those affected was the case of Alicia Zapata Anguiano who by means of document asked 12,000 pesos to Mariano Niño to complete the expenses of transfer of his son who died in another city but in the received documents comes an invoice for 38 thousand 836 pesos on behalf of of the affected one with her signature and the one of the deputy. The alleged beneficiary said that the deputy, through his liaison office, denied the requested support, so she did not even receive the first amount.

Another similar case occurred with professor Alma Delia Terrones Flores, who claims not to have made any request for management to the deputy and, nevertheless, in these documents appears an application, a copy of her IFE, her signature and the one of the deputy, requesting 5 cisterns and a purchase invoice for 38 thousand 500 pesos.

THE CLOUDY USE OF RESOURCES IN THE CONGRESS


The management of resources in the State Congress is a subject that has already raised a stir previously. The money used by the deputies for various concepts is guaranteed by themselves and the oversight bodies still lack the ability, rigor or willingness to demand accounts effectively.

The dynamic is not limited to a single party and rather corresponds to a generalized wasteful climate that seeks the least opportunity to find a channel of exploitation. One of the most notorious events was last year, related to the approved expenses for the reports of the legislators themselves who did not skimp on scratching the treasury for printing triptychs and other materials. In that, at least two million pesos where spent, which, to the greatest misfortune, were granted mostly to companies of dubious origin.

Thus, for example, was the case of the deputy Sergio Desfassiux Cabello (PRD) in July 2017, which approved an expense of 74,994.41 pesos for the production of a video, to which we must add 75,005.60 pesos for the printing of color triptychs relative to the report. A double that added a goal of 150,000.01 thousand pesos.

A similar case is the one of Deputy Xitlálic Sánchez Servín, who in September was approved two expenses for the report. First, the 75 thousand 168 pesos for printing triptychs and, second, the 74 thousand 831.99 pesos, for an audiovisual production and post-production in a total of 149,999.99 pesos.

It would be necessary to ask how it is that the deputies choose their service providers, whenever the expenses are quite high. It seems that when dealing with public resources (and not money from their own pockets) there is no care or limitations when it comes to choosing. There may be diversity among the contracted companies, but the cost is always high.

Service providers are a detail to which more attention should be paid. There is no filter that helps to find the best option nor does the tender solicit the works. The elected are not even leading companies in their field, which would make understandable the high prices. The norm is unknown companies of which there are no greater data online and that leave an unknown. Other issued invoices come from individuals, names of people who could be engineers or graphic designers or doctors. Impossible to know.

Some of these “companies” that have billed for congressmen and to which amounts are destined in sum are millionaire, Comercializadora Zadro, Special Services La Comercial, Services OJEDI, Office Express, Master Cparq, Multiasesores strategic, Guti Innovation advertising and experts in Comprehensive Corporate Services, of which there is no greater registry or reliable reference.

Also read: Mariano Niño took 86 thousand pesos from the congress to help a… dead man

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