The lower house of Congress has passed a bill to end presidential immunity, opening the door for the Mexican head of state to be prosecuted for a number of crimes.
The constitutional reform was passed with 420 votes in favor, 29 against and five abstentions.
The reform establishes that the president can be tried for crimes such as corruption, bribery, abuse of power, intimidation, embezzlement and illicit enrichment, among others.
“With this reform to the constitution we end the impunity that currently protects the president of the republic, which shields the head of state from prosecution and sentencing during the administrative term,” said Morena Deputy Pablo Gómez.
The reform also exposes a sitting president to prosecution for organized crime, genocide, financing terrorist organizations, drug and human trafficking, sexual tourism, homicide, rape, kidnapping and armed robbery and assault.
“Any one of those conducts that have characterized presidential administrations for many terms, that’s what we’re changing,” said Gómez, adding that the reform fulfills a campaign promise by President López Obrador.
Miroslava Carrillo Martínez, chairwoman of the committee on constitutional issues, added that the initiative aims to eliminate the apparatus of impunity that has too long protected the country’s highest public servant.
She and other members of the president’s Morena party agreed that the passage of the reform was an important step toward creating an ethical presidency and completely redefining the Mexican political system.
The bill now goes before the Senate for its consideration.
Source: Infobae (sp)