AMLO Blasts Court’s Blocking of National Guard Transfer to Sedena
By MARK LORENZANA
After Mexico’s Supreme Court (SCJN) on Tuesday, April 18, blocked the transfer of the National Guard (GN) to the National Defense Secretariat (Sedena), Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) on Wednesday, April 19, immediately responded to the SCJN ruling, blasting the decision of the court, and said that majority of the justices “acted factionally” and “not with legal criteria.”
“Eight ministers of the Supreme Court, with the exception of three, acted factionally yesterday (Tuesday) and not with legal criteria, but political ones, defending the old practices of the authoritarian and corrupt regime, characterized by injustice, collusion and subordination,” said López Obrador. “From the authorities to organized and white-collar crime, that is, the justices of the court acted in the style of the government of former Mexican President Felipe Calderón.”
In an eight-to-three vote, the SCJN determined on Tuesday that the transfer of the GN to the Sedena violated the Mexican Constitution’s Article 21, which states that all public security institutions, including the National Guard, must remain as civil entities.
Likewise, AMLO immediately instructed Secretary of Security Rosa Icela Rodríguez to “leave General David Córdova Campos as commander of the GN.”
López Obrador also made it clear that the GN “will continue to receive guidance, professional training and support” from the Mexican Army.
“In order not to affect the smooth running and consolidation of the National Guard, I have instructed Secretary Rosa Icela Rodríguez to keep General Córdova Campos as commander of the National Guard for his good performance,” AMLO said in his daily morning press conference Wednesday.
“The secretary began a tour of all the facilities and barracks of the National Guard, to inform the 130,000 members that they will keep their salaries, benefits and promotions, like the members of the armed forces because security is a priority of our government. The National Guard will continue to receive guidance, training and support from the Secretariat of National Defense because they did not prevent this in court yesterday (Tuesday).”
Business-focused daily newspaper El Financiero on Wednesday reported that despite the Supreme Court decision, “López Obrador will continue to insist that Congress approve the incorporation of the National Guard into Sedena” by “sending a new reform initiative on Sept. 1, 2024, a few days before the end of his six-year term.”
The El Financiero article detailed that “the president hopes that after the June 2024 elections, his ruling political party, the National Regeneration Movement (Morena), can count on a qualified majority in Congress that will allow him to obtain 334 votes to approve his initiative” and that currently, AMLO and his party “only has a simple majority, insufficient to endorse constitutional changes.”
Reforma political columnist F. Bartolome put in his two cents in his own Wednesday column, calling López Obrador’s reaction a “presidential tantrum.”
“Toads and snakes will come out of the presidential mouth today (Wednesday) when Andrés Manuel López Obrador begins to rant against the Supreme Court. There is no surprise in that: the script has been learned quite well by the president, and the most serious thing is that Mexican society has (have we?) normalized that the chief executive loses his temper. You don’t need to be a psychic to anticipate that AMLO will focus his anger on the Supreme Court, instead of recognizing that his reform to transfer the National Guard to the Sedena was clearly unconstitutional,” wrote Bartolome.
“But well, the presidential tantrum is the least of it. The important thing is that this time the majority of eight justices did come together to tear down the reform. It was undoubtedly a historic decision and, therefore, a brutal setback for the president and his national militarization project.”
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