Sunday, March 3, 2024

AMLO gives citizens a list of 16 reasons to join his march on Sunday

There is no shortage of reasons to participate in a pro-government march to be held in Mexico City this Sunday, President López Obrador declared on Tuesday.

AMLO last week called on his supporters to demonstrate in defense of the government’s proposed electoral reform, but said Tuesday that the purpose of the march had changed.

“It’s not about the electoral reform, that’s already set out, it’s already in Congress,” he told reporters at his regular news conference. He then proceeded to offer no less than 16 reasons why citizens should join him and march from the Angel of Independence on Reforma Avenue to the zócalo, Mexico City’s central square.

The march, the president and leader of what he calls Mexico’s “fourth transformation” said, is meant to accomplish the following:

Mexican senior posing with his pension card
A Morelos senior citizen poses with his government pension card. One reason the president gave for coming to Sunday’s march was that 85% of Mexican homes now receive at least a small portion of the public budget via social welfare programs. Margarito Pérez Retana/Cuartoscuro
  1. To celebrate that an oligarchy no longer dominates in Mexico.
  2. To celebrate that corruption is not allowed.
  3. To celebrate that tycoons now pay tax.
  4. To celebrate that we have healthy public finances.
  5. To say that 85% of Mexican homes now receive at least a small portion of the public budget (via social welfare programs).
  6. To say that we feel very happy to be supporting the poorest people.
  7. To say that we don’t want racism in Mexico and that we’re winning that battle.
  8. To say that we don’t accept classism or discrimination.
  9. To say that our strategy to attend to the root causes of violence is succeeding.
  10. To say that peace is the fruit of justice.
  11. To say that 12 million seniors now have a pension and they’ll get a 25% increase starting in January.
  12. To say that workers’ salaries are going to continue going up.
  13. To say that 11 million young students from poor families receive scholarships.
  14. To say that we’re saving 50 billion pesos by not paying the media for advertising.
  15. To say that there is hope and happiness among our people.
  16. To say that, despite the pandemic and other calamities, Mexico is moving forward and its prestige among the nations of the world is growing.

“That’s why [we’re holding] the march,” López Obrador said.

“Everyone who wants to attend should wear the color of their choice and shoes, sneakers, [or traditional sandals called] huaraches. Take your hat, your sombrero, because it will be sunny; and if you have a guitar, take your guitar or accordion. … We’re going to celebrate that we’re making progress in the transformation of the country, and that we’re doing it without violence, peacefully, and that [the transformation] is for the good of all,” he said.

On Wednesday, AMLO, who has participated in countless protests over the years, said that Sunday’s march – which will be held four days before he celebrates four years in office – might be his last.

Mexico's President Lopez Obrador
“We’re going to celebrate that we’re making progress in the transformation of the country,” AMLO told would-be marchers. Presidencia

“It could be the last, although I can’t say categorically that it will be because we don’t know what destiny has in store,” he told reporters at his news conference, held Wednesday in Manzanillo, Colima.

Asked whether a predicted 1.5 million people would participate, López Obrador declined to give a definitive answer.

“That isn’t known, it’s never known. It’s voluntary, people decide whether to go or not, it’s not, ‘You have to go, I’m going to check attendance,’” he said.

The march will be held two weeks after Mexicans took to the streets in some 50 cities to protest against his party’s proposed electoral reform, legislation that would replace the National Electoral Institute and state-based electoral authorities with one centralized body.

Critics of the constitutional reform – whose passage through Congress appears unlikely given that it requires the support of two-thirds of lawmakers – say that it’s a threat to Mexico’s democracy and that the government has put it forward to seize control of the country’s electoral authorities.

With reports from El Universal and Reforma

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