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Mexico Senate - File photo / EL UNIVERSAL

Keys against Corruption

Mexico City
Newspaper Leader by EL UNIVERSAL
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The National Anti-Corruption System is set in motion without all its parts being duly integrated

The times and interests of the Mexico Congress of the Union are not the times and interests of the country. At the legislation offices, resolutions on matters of the utmost importance have been stalled – such as those concerning security and the fight against corruption – without there being a clear interest to address them.

Mexico's single police force – a key to coordinate efforts against crime -- is in the freezer, joined by the bill on internal security – which would allow the Army to act in matters of public safety.

Moreover, the senators still haven't appointed an anti-corruption prosecutor or the magistrates specialized in the matter, who should have taken office as of today, July 19th. This law requirement was not complied with.

Thus, the National Anti-corruption System is set in motion without all its parts being duly integrated and without the will of the senators to reach agreements that could solve this offense. The message the Congress sends to society is one of reluctance, and a dismissal of the importance of this matter.

In this context, the system isn't off to a good start, yet there is hope in the form of the citizens' claims for a more transparent country and a better organized society, which has become an essential component of the actions to penalize and eliminate corruption from the Mexican political class.

The support that scholars, organizations and business chambers provided this Monday to the crusade against corruption shows the interest of a wide portion of the society, willing to delve into accountability and impunity reduction.

However, the Citizen Participation Committee – one of the seven organisms comprising the anti-corruption system – states that not only a strong and exacting civil society is needed, but also the improvement of the institutions, so they are able to fulfil the objectives they were created for.

States are at greater risk of setting up the anti-corruption state systems with weaknesses. Local citizen associations shall become close partners to point out inconsistencies and actions to be corrected.

Starting right now, despite the system being incomplete, a new stage begins where the objective is to prevent corruption acts, as well as to achieve society engagement. Had this decision been taken two decades ago, today we wouldn't be discussing ground collapses or former governors accused of embezzling millions of Mexican pesos. Mexico is still on the road towards democratic consolidation and this is an excellent opportunity to achieve it.

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