First Lady Angélica Rivera, Peña Nieto and Duarte: happy times in 2012. First Lady Angélica Rivera, Peña Nieto and Duarte: happy times in 2012.

Suspect governors once showed promise

They were hailed by Peña Nieto as 'the new PRI' and new generation of young leaders

Javier Duarte was “the new PRI” and the new governors of Chihuahua and Quintana Roo were hailed as a new generation of young leaders.

Today, the first is a fugitive wanted for corruption and the other two have left office amidst accusations of corrupt acts.

It was during the presidential campaign of 2012 that Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate Enrique Peña Nieto spoke of incumbent governors and members of his party such as Javier Duarte of Veracruz as “the new PRI.”

Along with the promise he saw in Duarte, Peña Nieto identified now former governors César Duarte of Chihuahua and Roberto Borge of Quintana Roo as a new generation of young leaders.

Peña Nieto stated that his party was undergoing a “renewal from within” and used the cases of the three incumbent governors as examples.

Nothing has been proved in court but there have been enough charges of mismanaging funds leveled against all three to generate doubts that the new generation was any different from the old.

Now, the president is not sure he remembers speaking of the former governors in flattering terms.

During a business forum on Tuesday a journalist bluntly asked the president if he still regarded Javier Duarte as a an example of “the new PRI.”

“I no longer recall that reference, but I might well have said it at one point if you say I did,” Peña Nieto replied, acknowledging that his party “makes mistakes and miscues like any other political institution.”

Of Duarte, the president said the “fugitive” would have to “assume his responsibility and face the accusations against him.”

“I’ve said that each political actor, regardless of their party, is responsible for his or her own acts . . . Of those accused and singled out, it is the competent authorities who will have to determine if they are culpable.”

Peña Nieto insisted his party is still undergoing renewal, adding that through the years the party has been an “architect and builder of great institutions, yet still prone to make mistake, as happens with all the political parties of the country.”

“All this that has happened is not at odds . . . with what has been happening in the party of my affiliation, with its internal renewal.”

That same night, the PRI leadership decided to expel Duarte from its ranks “because he failed in his responsibility as an elected official” and for “lack of ethics.”

Source: Zeta Tijuana (sp)

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