Sunday, July 21, 2024

Sheinbaum receives symbolic ‘women’s baton of command’

In September last year, Claudia Sheinbaum accepted a symbolic “baton of command” from President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who she replaced as the leader of the so-called “fourth transformation” political project.

Now the president-elect is also in possession of the “bastón de mando de las mujeres,” or women’s baton of command.

Claudia Sheinbaum and Olga Sánchez Cordero
Senator Olga Sánchez Cordero gave the baton to Sheinbaum on behalf of Mexican women. (Cuartoscuro)

On behalf of Mexican women, Senator Olga Sánchez, a former interior minister and Supreme Court justice, presented the handmade symbol of confidence and leadership to Mexico’s soon-to-be first female president at an event in Mexico City on Tuesday.

The event, called “Con Claudia llegamos todas” (With Claudia All Women Arrive), was held at the University of the Cloister of Sor Juana, a former convent where Sor (Sister) Juana Inés de la Cruz — a nun, writer and iconic Mexican woman — once lived.

Sánchez, who served as López Obrador’s interior minister between 2018 and 2021, told Sheinbaum it was an “honor” to present “the women’s baton” to her on behalf of “millions of women who enthusiastically joined our collective cause during these months” and “fought to have this country’s first woman president.”

She noted that the baton was made by artisans from Oaxaca, specifically the southern state’s Mixteca region.

“This baton is an unequivocal sign of the confidence Mexican women place in you — in the woman, politician, mother and grandmother you are,” Sánchez said.

The senator and soon-to-be deputy said the baton is also a symbol of confidence in Sheinbaum’s “vision and commitment to the people of Mexico, especially women.”

Sánchez also read out a list of objectives for the incoming president to pursue in office. They included “guaranteeing a life free of violence for all women,” ensuring equality of opportunities and guaranteeing women’s right to health care.

In an address, the president-elect expressed gratitude for the honor of receiving the “women’s baton of command,” and reiterated her view that she won’t “arrive” in Mexico’s top job on her own, but rather in the company of all Mexican women.

Morena aspirants for presidential candidacy
Sheinbaum defeated five men in the internal presidential candidate selection process for Morena in 2023. (Morena/X)

The former Mexico City mayor also said that the “fourth transformation” political project she now leads is a “feminist” movement.

“It always fights for the recognition of all women’s rights. For the good of all, [the nation’s] Indigenous women, Afro-Mexican women and poor women come first,” said Sheinbaum, who will take office Oct. 1.

She noted that she competed against five men to become the ruling Morena party’s candidate at the June 2 presidential election, and asserted that on the first Sunday of this month, “the people of Mexico said: ‘it’s time for women and time for transformation.'”

Sheinbaum said that her government would seek to close the gender pay gap, increase the representation of women in elected positions, and support girls and young women in pursuing their dreams, no matter the field.

She also highlighted that she is committed to providing financial support to women aged 60-64, in recognition of the household and caring work they have done for their families over a long period of time.

Women from a range of fields attended the event, including renowned writer Elena Poniatowska, academic and feminist Marta Lamas and saxophonist María Elena Ríos Ortíz, survivor of a 2019 acid attack. Sheinbaum’s mother, biologist Annie Pardo, also attended the event, held a day after the president-elect turned 62.

With reports from La JornadaEl Financiero, Expansión and Debate 

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