News, Guanacaste Votes

New Generation Party’s candidate for vice mayor in La Cruz was penalized for not reporting assets

Esta publicación también está disponible en: Español
Translator: Arianna Hernandez

The candidate for first vice mayor of La Cruz for the New Generation party, Socorro Díaz, was given a disciplinary sanction by the Comptroller’s Office of 15 days without pay in 2022 for having reported only three assets, when in reality she had 31 properties registered in her name.

Since 2010, Socorro has been part of the Regional Council of the Guanacaste Conservation Area (Spanish acronym: ACG), and the procedure was opened in the Comptroller General of the Republic’s Office in October of 2022, when she was already serving as a council member for the Municipality of La Cruz. 

Public servants must submit an annual declaration in which their financial asset situation is recorded in order to maintain a mechanism to combat corruption. This is regulated by the Law Against Corruption and Illicit Enrichment in Public Service.

The candidate for vice mayor did not declare assets in 2020 or 2021, whereas in 2022, she only declared one. However, according to the investigation directed by the Comptroller’s Office, in the National Property Registry for the year 2013, 15 real estate properties were registered in her name. Then, in 2017, the registry shows that another 19 properties were added.

According to Socorro’s statements to this medium, trusting a third party to help her with the procedure cost her the sanction.

As a member of the Regional Council of the Guanacaste Conservation Area, the secretary is the one who helped us with that, making the declarations. What I did was give her my information and she filled it out. I explained to them that it had been a mistake, because many times now, we senior citizens don’t navigate the system and I relied on her to help me,” she stated.

“No one can claim ignorance of the law,” says article 129 of the Political Constitution, to which the controlling body adheres to give continuity to the process and to remind people that officials must “make sure that their financial asset situation declarations are as stated. establishes the legal system” and if someone doesn’t understand the system, use the institution’s communication channels to help with questions.