Thousands of opposition protesters gather in Mexico City’s Zocalo square to demonstrate against electoral reform, including that of the left-wing ruling party’s electoral system.AFP
Under the slogan #MiVotoNoSeToca, crowds dressed in white and pink (the institutional colors of the Electoral College) spread across much of the Zocalo (the country’s main public square of approximately 21,000 square meters) and Mexico’s historic It filled several peripheral streets in the center. city.
Alejandro Rodríguez, a 61-year-old lawyer who wants President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to dominate next year’s presidential election, said the reform was “a step back to democracy.”
The reform cuts the staff and budget of the National Electoral Institute (INE), which is responsible for organizing elections, and the president accuses it of costing public money and allowing fraud in the past.
Like other protesters, Rodriguez took to the streets to “protest the president” who accused him of carrying out a policy of “harming Mexicans.”
“Reform is attacking all our institutions and trying to take away our freedom,” declared Feliciano Vidal, a 65-year-old independent worker.
The demonstration was called by several political and civic groups belonging to the National Civil Front against Lopez Obrador, who by law cannot stand for re-election. His party leads the poll preferences for the 2024 election.
Ramon Cosio, a former magistrate of the Juan Supreme Court and the event’s main speaker, accused the president of wanting to “get the electoral system in place.”
Cossio believed that the Supreme Court would reverse the reforms if the cases filed with the Supreme Court failed.
“We trust their (judges) democratic spirit and the decisions they make to preserve the democratic life of the country,” said a former magistrate, whom the president called a “corrupt hypocrite.” said.
In response to today’s protests, Lopez Obrador, whose popularity is about 60%, called on his followers to mobilize on March 18 to mark the 85th anniversary of the nationalization of oil in Mexico.
Opposition groups have called for demonstrations in several Mexican cities to reject controversial electoral reforms championed by President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador.AFP
Faculty of Cut
Authorities in ruling party-ruled Mexico City said about 90,000 people took part in the protests, while Marco Cortes, leader of the opposition National Action Party (PAN, right), said there were 500,000 protesters. rice field. Protests also took place in various cities across the country.
Opponents reject an amendment pushed by Mexico’s first left-wing president and approved by Congress last Wednesday.
According to the independent National Electoral Service (INE), these changes have eliminated 85% of career officials and reduced their ability to operate.
The INE, which is responsible for preparing and organizing elections, will ensure that the reforms will eliminate 300 district committees and reduce the territorial structure. This leaves some of her 32 states with 125 million inhabitants with her one representative. election office.
These changes will affect the updating and cleansing of the electoral rolls, which consist of approximately 93 million voters, the entity notes in its documents.
Officials charged with training voting jurors have also disappeared, adding that their ability to monitor election propaganda on radio and television is limited.
Similarly, the reform will limit the INE’s ability to sanction public officials who speak favorably of candidates in election campaigns.
Opponents argue that all of this affects the independence of the bodies responsible for the elections and balances them in favor of the government in the face of elections in mid-2024.
The proposal aims to reduce the size and budget of the National Electoral Institute (INE), the independent body that organizes elections.AFP
Lopez Obrador disqualified the protest ahead of time, pointing out that behind the protest there are “corrupt” groups who want to return to power to continue stealing. The president believes that INE directors enjoy privileges that other employees do not have.
The president hinted that the demonstrations were in favor of Genaro García Luna, who served as head of public security during the government of former president Felipe Calderón (2006-2012).
“They come to say: Not only is ‘INE untouched,’ but it is also said that ‘Garcia Luna is untouched,’ and at its core, ‘The corrupt conservative regime is untouched.’ No.’ That’s the purpose,’ said the ruler. Repeated throughout the week.
Brian Nichols, the U.S. director of Latin American foreign affairs, said on Twitter on Sunday that there was “a major debate going on over electoral reform that will test the independence of the electoral and judicial systems” in Mexico.
“The United States supports independent electoral bodies with resources to strengthen democratic processes and the rule of law,” he added.
Electoral reforms were approved by parliament after a constitutional amendment in December, in which the ruling party proposed scrapping the INE, failed.
A large demonstration in Mexico City on November 13, 2022 rejected that proposal. Lopez Obrador responded by mobilizing tens of thousands of supporters in the capital.