Friday, December 1, 2023

Judge suspends new airport construction, rules Texcoco be left intact

The federal government’s airport plan has hit yet another legal hurdle.

A federal judge has ordered that construction of the Santa Lucía airport (AISL) must be suspended and that the abandoned airport project at Texcoco be left intact.   

The ruling was made in response to an injunction request filed by the #NoMásDerroches (No More Waste) Collective, a group made up of civil society organizations, law firms and more than 100 citizens.

The group said in a statement that it has already obtained six definitive suspension orders against the AISL that stipulated that construction could not begin until environmental, safety and aeronautical viability permits, among others, had been obtained.   

“In other words, once all the permits and studies in those matters have been obtained, which for the most part depend on the federal administration itself, the government would have the legal opportunity to start construction of the airport even if the injunction proceedings haven’t yet concluded,” #NoMásDerroches said.  

“With this new injunctive relief obtained by #NoMásDerroches, construction of the AISL will have to wait until the injunction proceedings are definitively resolved,” it explained.

The collective has filed 147 separate injunction requests that could hold up or threaten construction of the new airport.

According to Rogelio Rodríguez, an attorney who specializes in aviation law, resolving all of them could take up to a year.  

President López Obrador once again described the legal action against the US $4.8-billion airport as “legal sabotage.”

“. . . It’s incredible, more than 80 injunctions. How many injunctions were presented when they [the former government] wanted to do the juicy business of building the Texcoco lake airport?” he asked at today’s presidential press conference.

Answering his own question, López Obrador said that there were none before claiming that now that he is in office, “filing injunctions against all the projects we’re doing is like a national sport.”

“I hope that this is resolved soon. We’re asking the judicial power, in accordance with the law, to resolve this because they’re stalling tactics . . . so that the project isn’t built or is delayed . . .” he said.

The president declined to offer a prediction about how long the project might be delayed.

The Secretariat of National Defense, which is building the airport, said last month the airport will open in January 2022, six months later than originally anticipated.

According to the master plan, its construction will take 30 months.

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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