State coordinators: misconduct & corruption

The lower chamber approved the creation of state coordinators in November 2018

State coordinators: misconduct & corruption
The federal government claims this administration is different from previous ones; however, the reports against state coordinators point at irregularities - Photo: File photo
English 08/09/2020 09:06 Mexico City Editorial Actualizada 09:12
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The lower chamber approved the creation of state coordinators in November 2018. The goal seemed effective: decrease the number of delegates deployed by the federal government in each state since the new model eliminated hundreds of positions, leading to savings. Before the creation of state coordinators, each government department had a representative in each state. 

However, those who disagreed with the creation of the new role argued it could be used for electoral and political purposes. They also said the state coordinators would become powerful and turn into a counterpart for the local government. Since the position was created by lawmakers, state coordinators were known as the “super-delegates.”

Today, those fears have been confirmed. EL UNIVERSAL revealed authorities have filed 97 official complaints against state coordinators before the Public Administration Ministry (SFP). The head of the SFP confirmed 12 complaints against 10 state coordinators in 2019. Minister Irma Eréndira Sandoval said the SFP registered 102 complaints against current and former delegates this year.  

The newspaper obtained the information after filing a request before the National Institute for Transparency, Access to Information and Personal Data Protection (INAI). The Welfare and Public Administration ministries refused to provide certain information because they considered it should remain confidential. 

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The federal government claims this administration is different from previous ones, that honesty is one of its main values, and that corruption is over; however, the reports against state coordinators point at irregularities. The accusations against the coordinators include bribery, using public resources for unofficial purposes, administrative misconduct in the management of welfare programs, irregularities in the administration of welfare programs, and the mismanagement of cards. 

One of the most emblematic cases was Carlos Lomelí, appointed as the Jalisco delegate. In the end, state authorities accused Lomelí of being part of a network of pharmaceutical companies that sold medicines to the government, en evident conflict of interest. Carlos Lomelí resigned but there was no sanction. 

The current administration, especially the Public Administration Ministry, must go beyond its discourse and show that it will not tolerate misconduct. This is its opportunity to eradicate corruption. 

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