Monday, June 24, 2024

Veteran politician urges taking back territory controlled by organized crime

The state must retake territory controlled by organized crime in order to guarantee economic growth and social peace, former presidential candidate Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas said Monday.

Speaking at a National Autonomous University event, Cárdenas described criminal groups as “grave cancers” that must be purged.

The 87-year-old advocated “the establishment and expansion of [government] productive projects, schools, universities, clinics, and technological innovation and work training programs in each portion of the national territory” where organized crime has a presence.

Cárdenas, a former senator, governor of Michoacán, Mexico City mayor and candidate in the 1988, 1994 and 2000 presidential elections, warned that if there is a social and institutional vacuum in parts of the country and the state doesn’t fill it, someone else will.

“… It has been and will be important not to allow cracks in the rule of law through which which destabilizing interests could seep in,” he said.

Mexico needs a strong government capable of taking actions “in favor of the nation and the people within a framework of a full and effective rule of law,” Cárdenas said.

His remarks came two weeks after he criticized President López Obrador and his administration for failing to make progress on resolving the problems they inherited.

“The results of a government, without any doubt, are measured by achievements. We haven’t managed to reverse the trend … [we’ve seen] for the past four decades. We have low economic growth, … violence is present in the whole country, we have a high unemployment rate – we haven’t even managed to recover the jobs lost due to the pandemic, [and we have] an education system with deficiencies. That’s what we have in these three years [of government],” Cárdenas said during an appearance at the Guadalajara International Book Fair.

“… That’s how I see the country: still with a lot of shortcomings and without proposals to overcome these problems of poverty, insecurity, poor economic growth, environmental deterioration and gender issues; I don’t see initiatives from those who have the obligation to present them,” he said.

“We lack proposals from the political entities, starting with the government – proposals that tell us how to regain economic growth, how to carry out a fiscal reform. I’m worried that there are no proposals from political parties; we have a political life focused on confrontation,” Cárdenas said.

The veteran politician said the ruling Morena party has a responsibility to seek dialogue with the opposition that is aimed at resolving the problems the country faces.

Cárdenas also said that people with aspirations to become Mexico’s next president should declare their intentions publicly and tell citizens why they aspire to the job.

“It’s not to earn a good salary because it’s come down quite a lot,” he joked.

With reports from Reforma 

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