While other stories now grasp the headlines, Hondurans are still grappling with the consequences of the ouster of former president, Jose Manuel Zalaya.
Most recently, military commanders responsible for following orders and removing Zalaya are being brought up on charges:
Honduran prosecutors have charged three military chiefs with abuse of power in connection with the ousting and exile of President Manuel Zelaya last June.… A spokesman said they were being charged with abuse of authority for sending Mr Zelaya out of the country. Under the Honduran constitution, it is illegal to forcibly remove Honduran citizens from the country.
Nevertheless, it appears Zalaya will remain out of office until his official replacement takes over. Zalaya’s replacement, Roberto Michaletti, who was second in line to the presidency and most responsible for the ouster of President Zalaya, never sought the presidency himself, but defiantly stood up for the rule of law in Honduras — against international pressure and Zalaya’s demands to allow his return. Michaletti’s restraint and dignity is noteworthy, to say the least.
The newly elected president of Honduras, Porfirio Lobo, will be sworn in on January 27. One hopes that he will continue to resist the siren calls of Venezuelan president Chavez and others who would pull that country to the left and into a position that would be hostile to the United States and to the principles of liberty.
We should hope and watch for Mr. Lobo to continue to do the right thing for Hondurans.