López Obrador’s reforms ‘fade’ Mexico’s democracy, says ICC

Mexico City, Feb 12 (EFE). – The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) said on Monday that the constitutional reforms proposed by Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador “fade” democracy and “threaten” the fight against corruption in the country.

The organization denounced in a statement that “Mexico remains stuck in 26th place out of 180 among the most corrupt countries in the world,” according to the latest report by Transparency International, which contrasts with López Obrador’s promise to “fight corruption and impunity.”

“The reform package presented on Feb. 5 (…) directly hinders the fight against corruption and weakens the country’s democratic model,” it warned.

On Feb. 5, Mexico’s Constitution Day, four months before the federal elections, López Obrador presented 20 initiatives to “restore the greatness” of the Magna Carta and protect it from “reactionaries.”

The ICC questioned that the reforms would eliminate the National Institute of Transparency, Access to Information and Protection of Personal Data (Inai), which has published “crucial information to uncover major embezzlement and corruption networks,” such as the case of the Brazilian company Odebrecht.

“Without transparency and information on the use of public resources, the fight against corruption is reduced to a good intention,” the Chamber lamented.

The proposal to eliminate the Executive Secretariat of the National Anti-Corruption System and integrate it into the Secretariat of Public Function, which is part of the government, is also not accepted because it “implies a vision of allowing and protecting” corruption.

ICC also criticized the reform of the judicial power, which implies its “dismantling” and a “risk to the balance of powers,” as well as the proposal to elect judges by popular vote.

“It will only allow the election of those who have been pre-selected by the executive and legislative branches,” it warned.

Finally, the ICC appealed to Congress and Mexican citizens to “evaluate these risks” and contribute to a “constructive dialogue” on anti-corruption issues.

This appeal comes on the same as a demonstration was announced for Sunday in Mexico and other cities by civil organizations to protest the constitutional reform. EFE


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