Mexico: new opposition demonstration against electoral reform
Protesters dressed in white and pink gathered in the central square of the Zocalo in Mexico City.
Tens of thousands demonstrated in Mexico City on Sunday against a government-approved electoral reform that threatens, according to the opposition, the National Electoral Institute (INE ) responsible for organizing the next presidential poll in mid-2024.
Demonstrators dressed in white and pink (the colors of the INE) gathered in the central square of the Zocalo, the largest in Mexico, under the slogan We don't touch my vote, noted a journalist from AFP.
Definitely approved on Wednesday, the electoral reform reduces the budget and jobs at INE that the President of the Republic, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, accuses to have covered up fraud in the past and to cost the public finances dearly.
Key elements […] of the Mexican electoral system that has allowed the peaceful and periodic renewal of powers through the free and secret ballot are at risk of being affected, according to INE.
INE and the opposition parties have announced an appeal against the reform before the judges of the Supreme Court.
We trust them […] to preserve the democratic life of the country, declared a speaker, José Ramon Cossio Diaz, himself a former magistrate at the Supreme Court. He accuses the current president of wanting to appropriate the electoral system.
The reform is a step backwards for democracy, told AFP Alejandro Rodriguez, a 61-year-old lawyer, also came to protest against the leftist president. His policy is detrimental to Mexicans, he believes.
A fan of political divisiveness, Mr. Lopez Obrador described his opponents as corrupt who want to return to power.
He said the protesters were also defending former security minister Genaro García Luna, who was just convicted of drug trafficking by a court in the United States. Genaro Garcia Luna had been a minister under the right-wing president Felipe Calderon (2006-2012).
They come to say: we don't touch the INE. But also: "we don't touch Garcia Luna," and in the background: "we do not touch the corrupt and conservative regime", launched Mr. Lopez Obrador on Wednesday.
The president, still popular after more than four years in office, announced a March 18 protest for the 85th anniversary of the nationalization of oil production and exploitation by his predecessor Lazaro Cardenas.
< p class="e-p">Elected in 2018, Mr. Lopez Obrador will leave power at the end of his unique six-year mandate provided for by the Constitution.
His minister of Foreign Affairs Marcelo Ebrard and especially the mayor of Mexico City, Claudia Sheinbaum, both of the ruling Morena party, are the favorites in the race to succeed Mr. Lopez Obrador according to opinion polls.
A first opposition demonstration against the reform brought together tens of thousands of people in the streets of Mexico City on November 13.
Two weeks later, Mr. Lopez Obrador mobilized tens of thousands of people in the streets to present the results of his four years in power.