Sunday, July 21, 2024

Sheinbaum names interior minister, security minister and other top cabinet appointments

President-elect Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo has announced cabinet appointments for some of the top posts in Mexico. Among the names is current Security Minister Rosa Icela Rodríguez Velázquez for Interior Minister, a position usually considered the second most powerful in the Mexican government.

Sheinbaum, who won Mexico’s presidential election on June 2 for the Morena Party, will take office on Oct. 2.

Sheinbaum also announced Thursday that Omar García Harfuch will be her security minister, Ariadna Montiel Reyes will remain in her current position as welfare minister and Mario Delgado Carillo will be Mexico’s education minister.

García served as security minister in Mexico City between 2019 and 2023 while Sheinbaum was mayor. Delgado has been the national president of the Morena party since 2020.

With the four new appointees seated behind her at the Interactive Museum of the Economy in Mexico City, Sheinbaum said that Rodríguez, García, Montiel and Delgado are “honest and professional women and men who are part of the fourth transformation.”

The fourth transformation, or 4T, is the name of the political project initiated by current President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and the ruling Morena party.

In remarks after her announced appointment to Sheinbaum’s cabinet, Rodríguez said that the incoming government “will build the second story of the transformation of Mexico.”

A portrait of Rosa Icela Rodríguez with Mexican flags.
Current Security Minister Rosa Icela Rodríguez will take the helm of the powerful Interior Ministry in Sheinbaum’s incoming administration. (CC BY-SA 4.0)

She also said it’s a “privilege” to “walk side by side” with Sheinbaum, who will be the first female president of Mexico.

“With you, all women arrive — grandmothers, mothers and daughters,” Rodríguez said.

As interior minister, she pledged to work “with efficacy and sensibility” in responding to “citizens’ demands.”

García, appointed as security minister at a time when Mexico continues to record very high homicide numbers, pledged to “work tirelessly” to build “a stronger, safer, fairer and more prosperous Mexico for everyone.”

Omar Harfuch, an appointee for Sheinbaum's governing cabinet, stands in front of a red stage curtain wearing a suit
Omar García started his career as a federal police officer but quickly rose through the ranks into leadership roles. (Mario Jasso/Cuartoscuro)

He said that his Security Ministry will work in “absolute coordination” with the Mexican military — which is heavily involved in public security operations — and the governments of Mexico’s 32 federal entities.

García also said that Sheinbaum has given clear instructions for the National Guard (GN) to be strengthened under the responsibility of Mexico’s Ministry of National Defense, or army. A constitutional reform will be required to once again place the GN under army control.

For her part, Montiel said that the incoming government will have the “great challenge of continuing to combat poverty” but asserted that the current government has “found” the way to do it.

The current government’s welfare and social programs, including employment schemes, “will have a long life,” she said.

“… For the good of all, the poor come first,” Montiel concluded, quoting President López Obrador, who uttered the phrase at his presidential inauguration in 2018.

In his brief address, Delgado said, “There is nothing more exciting than working in education because there is the possibility to change destinies, to change lives.”

With his appointment and those of Rodríguez, García and Montiel, Sheinbaum has now named 16 members of her cabinet.

The day after her landslide victory in the June 2 presidential election, Sheinbaum announced that current Finance Minister Rogelio Ramírez de la O would remain in his role after Oct.1, while on June 20, she named five additional ministers and the executive legal counsel.

Last Thursday, the president-elect announced five more appointments to her cabinet.

Claudia Sheinbaum at a press event with five newly announced cabinet members
Sheinbaum also announced a batch of new cabinet appointments last Thursday, including health minister, public administration minister and energy minister. (Cuartoscuro)

She has not yet announced who her labor, tourism, culture, national defense and navy ministers will be.

Based on the announcements made to date, Sheinabum’s cabinet — made up of eight men and eight women — is as follows:

  • Interior Minister: Rosa Icela Rodríguez
  • Security Minister: Omar García Harfuch
  • Education Minister: Mario Delgado
  • Welfare Minister: Ariadna Montiel Reyes
  • Economy Minister: Marcelo Ebrard
  • Environment and Natural Resources Minister: Alicia Bárcena
  • Finance Minister: Rogelio Ramírez de la O
  • Minister for Science, Humanities, Technology and Innovation: Rosaura Ruiz
  • Foreign Affairs Minister: Juan Ramón de la Fuente
  • Legal Counsel to the President: Ernestina Godoy
  • Agriculture and Rural Development Minister: Julio Berdegué
  • Energy Minister: Luz Elena González Escobar
  • Health Minister: David Kershenobich Stalnikowitz
  • Public Administration Minister: Raquel Buenrostro
  • Infrastructure, Communications and Transport Minister: Jesús Antonio Esteva Medina
  • Agrarian, Land and Urban Development Minister: Edna Elena Vega Rangel

What are the backgrounds of Sheinbaum’s new cabinet appointees?

Rosa Icela Rodríguez Velázquez

The soon-to-be interior minister has served as federal security minister since late 2020.

She is Mexico’s first female security minister, and will remain in the role until the end of López Obrador’s presidency.

Homicides have decreased during her time as security minister, reaching their lowest level since 2016 last year. However, insecurity remains a significant problem in various parts of the country.

Before becoming security minister, Rodríguez was general coordinator of ports, a position within the federal Ministry of Infrastructure, Communications and Transportation. Before that, she was government secretary in Sheinbaum’s Mexico City administration.

Security Minister Rosa Icela Rodríguez accompanies President López Obrador at a military event.
As security minister for the current administration, Rosa Icela Rodríguez is often seen at President López Obrador’s side. (lopezobrador.org.mx)

Rodríguez has a journalism degree and is currently studying for a master’s in crime science. She will succeed Luisa María Alcalde as interior minister.

Omar García Harfuch

Mexico’s next security minister was Mexico City security minister between late 2019 and last September.

Sheinbaum said Thursday that homicides in the capital declined 50% during the period García was security minister and she was mayor. While he was in that position, García survived an armed attack allegedly perpetrated by the Jalisco New Generation Cartel.

Before serving as Mexico City security minister, the 42-year-old Cuernavaca native was head of the federal Criminal Investigation Agency for two years. He has degrees in law and public security.

García will succeed Rosa Icela Rodríguez as security minister.

Ariadna Montiel Reyes

Montiel has been welfare minister since January 2022 and will remain in the position after Oct. 1. She previously served as a deputy minister for social and human development in the current federal government.

Montiel has also been a federal and Mexico City lawmaker and was public transport chief during the 2006–2012 Mexico City mayorship of Marcelo Ebrard, who will be Mexico’s next economy minister.

Portraits of Ariadna Montiel Reyes and Mario Delgado, two of Sheinbaum's most recent cabinet appointments
Ariadna Montiel Reyes will continue as federal welfare minister in Sheinbaum’s cabinet while Morena party president Mario Delgado will head the Education Ministry. (claudiasheinbaumpardo.mx)

Mario Delgado

The future education minister gave up his position as a lawmaker and leader of the Morena party in the lower house of Congress in November 2020 to become the ruling party’s national president. This year, he also worked as the general coordinator of Sheinbaum’s successful presidential campaign.

Earlier in his political career, Delgado was a federal senator and served as finance minister and education minister during Ebrard’s Mexico City mayorship. He has undergraduate and master’s degrees in economics.

Delgado will succeed Leticia Ramírez Amaya as education minister.

Mexico News Daily  

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