03 May 2012

JSMP Criticizes Americo’s Outburst

JORNAL INDEPENDENTE 2 May 2012 By: Raimundo Oki DILI: An NGO has criticized Justice Minister Lucia Lobato’s husband for shouting the word “autonomist” at judicial authorities in the Dili District Court during his wife’s corruption trial.

When Americo Lopes arrived at the court on April 24, the first day of the trial, he shouted that autonomists had made false accusations against his wife regarding Ministry of Justice projects.

Judicial System Monitoring Program (JSMP) director Luis Sampaio said he believed that in Timor-Leste there were some people who had hurt the feelings of others because of past actions.

Today Timor-Leste was an independent nation with its own systems, he said, but it was a reality that before this there were some groups who did not agree with independence.

JSMP believed it was better to voice opinions to all institutions, and not against a judicial institution that was hearing a case, putting pressure on the court, he said.

Mr Sampaio said his NGO was dedicated to monitoring any cases that entered court, including Ms Lobato’s.

Ms Lobato’s trial had run following the normal process, he said, and he hoped it would conclude soon.

JSMP considered the minister’s case to have gravity and was happy with the involvement of the Public Ministry team, which had not happened in other cases, he said.

“In our opinion, there is a good willingness from the minister herself with her status because she collaborated with the court’s notification. This does not really happen often in post-conflict nations in the world including Timor-Leste,” the JSMP director said.

Ms Lobato’s trial will continue in the Dili District Court from May 23-25.

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