International Commission Against Impunity in El Salvador (CiCIES)

During his election campaign, a principal pledge of Nayib Bukele was to combat corruption, and one of his proposals was to bring forward in El Salvador a commission with international backing to do just that.  Recently, Bukele has been promising the inauguration of the International Commission Against Impunity in El Salvador ("CICIES" for its initials in Spanish) within his first 100 days in office which conclude in mid-September.
Nayib Bukele

Despite the pledge of a corruption fighting commission, few details are known about how such a body will function.   The task of developing this commission was given by Bukele to his vice president Felix Ulloa.  From Latin America Reports:
On June 7, Vice President Félix Ulloa confirmed that the government was in “advanced conversations” with the OAS and the UN about the CICIES, but no formal plans have been released. Leonor Arteaga, program director at the Due Process of Law Foundation (DPLF) highlighted that it is paramount the government release a concrete proposal giving detailed information about what the CICIES will entail.  
“We need to know how real it is, how genuine the president’s intention to fight corruption is,” she told Latin America Reports in a phone interview. “Right now, the CICIES is still just a campaign promise – we need to know what it is exactly. If not, there is the risk that Nayib Bukele and his government could use the CICIES as a way to purge his political enemies.” 
For the CICIES to have the same power as the Guatemala’s CICIG — that is, the capacity to investigate and accuse independently – Bukele will have to get a Constitutional Reform approved by the legislative assembly. Many MPs in the El Salvadorian assembly are involved in corruption scandals themselves — in May, the Prosecutor’s office opened an investigation into an alleged “corruption network” in the assembly. If the assembly votes against such a reform, then it is likely to be a weaker commission, similar to the MACCIH in Honduras.
Despite the lack of public disclosure of the details of a plan, Ulloa has been publicly touting the CICIES, promising that it would go after corrupt government officials and those persons who would corrupt them by paying bribes or otherwise.  A laudable goal, but it will take more than just the orders of Bukele and Ulloa in the executive branch of government to accomplish.

Felix Ulloa 

It is difficult to see how you create such a commission without active discussions with the country's attorney general.  Unlike in the United States, where prosecutors are part of the Executive Branch of the government, the attorney general's office in El Salvador is an independent organ of the government and the attorney general is appointed by the National Assembly and not the President.  Yet only six days ago, El Salvador's attorney general Raul Melara stated that he had not yet been consulted about a proposal for CICIES.  Melara states that he will continue to fight corruption whether or not a CICIES is established. 

It is also difficult to imagine such a commission operating without enabling legislation being passed by the National Assembly.  President of the legislature, Norman Quijano, as well as others have been cool to the idea of a CICIES, without flatly dismissing it. 

Campaign slogans like "There's enough money when no one steals" and "Return what was stolen" are simple enough to utter, but I fear Bukele will find they are much tougher to implement in the context of existing government institutions and political alignments.



"Bukele will have to get a Constitutional Reform approved by the legislative assembly."

Unless things have changed, a Constitutional Reform needs to be approved by two consecutive assemblies. That means this is years away at best.