President López Obrador blasted a civil society organization for opposing federal projects, chiefly the new airport at the Santa Lucía Air Force Base.
The president declared at his morning press conference on Tuesday that Mexicans Against Corruption and Impunity (MCCI) is carrying out a campaign of “sabotage” against his administration.
“They’ve dedicated themselves to legally sabotaging us, by asking for injunctions against projects,” he said. “They don’t want us to do anything, they want the same corrupt regime to continue.”
The MCCI is one of the organizations that make up the #NoMásDerroches (No More Waste) collective, which has led the legal resistance to the Santa Lucía airport.
“Imagine defending the airport in Lake Texcoco, the looting that was being prepared, the biggest robbery ever of the people and the nation,” said the president. “It was going to mean a trillion pesos (US $51.4 billion),” presumably alluding to overruns or other costs of the project, which had been estimated to cost $15 billion.
López Obrador also defended himself from criticisms by MCCI president Claudio X. González for the cancellation of the 2013 education reform, calling González and his organization “conservatives,” not a complimentary term as far as the president is concerned.
“They got very upset about this, about something that didn’t benefit education at all,” he said. “On the other hand, it was all part of a privatization plan. They need to understand that we’re not going to keep applying the same neoliberal policies, we’re already in the post-neoliberal period.”
In a tweet last week, González criticized López Obrador’s decision to give more power to the teachers’ unions.
“The president’s decision to give control of public education to the CNTE and the SNTE is, in a historical perspective, enough to declare his administration one of the most damaging administrations in history,” González wrote. “Unfortunately, it’s not the only area where he’s hurting Mexico.”
Education reform was one of the few structural reforms of the previous government that had widespread support, and was generally regarded as a positive step for education. But it was bitterly fought by the CNTE teachers’ union, with which López Obrador has a close relationship.