Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Good news from Mexico

An interesting development in Mexico:

Mexico City's mayor back on job after favorable court ruling

Mexico City Mayor Andrés Manuel López Obrador was back on the job yesterday after being banished from his office for 18 days by a congressional vote to impeach him.


López Obrador was accused of violating a 2001 court order to stop building a hospital access road on private land. The dispute is minor, but the congressional vote to strip him of his immunity and his job as mayor could cost him his place on next year's presidential ticket.
According to this, that hospital access road was never actually built. So it sounds to me like he actually obeyed the court order, and the contempt of court charge is completely trumped up--with the aim, of course, of keeping Obrador out of the running in Mexico's presidential election next year.

Continuing on:
The federal attorney general's office filed abuse-of-authority charges against him last week, only to have them rejected by a judge who said prosecutors made a technical mistake. Since López Obrador no longer faces criminal charges, he said there was nothing to prevent him from returning to his office.

"The whole federal government used all its power against López Obrador and it failed," said political analyst Lorenzo Meyer. "This time, López Obrador had more political muscle."

The mayor, who is often referred to as AMLO, demonstrated his strength to the nation Sunday, when nearly 1 million people took to the streets in a silent march he had called for the day of the congressional vote. Mexicans heeded his warning that the country's democracy is being threatened by politicians who want to remove him from the presidential ticket simply because he is the front-runner.


As his supporters gathered Sunday in Mexico City's main plaza, López Obrador outlined his campaign platform, which focused on reducing the misery quotient for millions of impoverished Mexicans.
Heaven forbid that the poor should be helped--it's no wonder the Mexican powers-that-be want him out of the running.
He also offered a message to those who worry he is following in the footsteps of Hugo Chávez, Venezuela's leftist president and an ally of Cuban President Fidel Castro. "There is no reason for anyone to be worried or alarmed," López Obrador said. "It will not be us who damage Mexico, because we deeply love this country and we are committed to rescuing it."
Well, I don't agree with the assessment of Chavez as "damaging", but that's another topic entirely.


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