|The Chief Justice|
Suspicions that the multiple bribes, paid to Chirú, to facilitate the release of the 25 drug trafficking defendants, were shared with Ayú Prado, have Panamanians up in arms over the scandal. Notwithstanding his involvement in several major bribe and kickback scandals, neither the president of Panama, nor the local equivalent of the judicial qualifications commission, which is toothless, have been able to remove the Chief Justice from office.
Most Panamanians, who are now asserting that there is no possibility that Ayú Prado will be forced to step down, have concluded that President Juan Carlos Varela's Rodriguez' much-anticipated reform government was a paper tiger, with no real intention to take down the judges that are taking bribes, hand over fist, to fix cases, and are waiting for the next government to actually conduct much-needed reform. They are ready for Varela to leave office, but that unfortunately will not occur until July 1, 2019.