Mexican President Involved in a New Corruption Scandal

July 23, 2015

7/23/15 teleSUR 

12242280414_183b094546_zMexican President Enrique Peña Nieto is involved in a new scandal. This time it is nepotism as one of his nieces holds a top executive position in the state-owned oil company Pemex since 2014, less than a year after she graduated from university. In 2014, Maria Fernanda Said Pretelini was hired as highly-paid coordinator in Pemex’s press office in spite of her lack of experience or knowledge for the position. Aristegui Noticias – a news outlet headed by Carmen Aristegui – the Mexican journalist fired from radio broadcaster MVS because she exposed Peña Nieto in a corruption scandal involving a US$7-million mansion – revealed this new case of presidential corruption. The news outlet said Said Pretilini is making close to US$4,000 a month, which is a salary five times higher than any other university graduate of her level and experience.

“Said Pretilini’s only other job experience was working one year for an NGO called ‘Join Foundation! Donate Life as an assistant’,” Aristegui Noticias said. Said Pretilini is now in charge of coordinating information campaigns and market and opinion analysis. “She has no experience nor the proper knowledge to carry out these tasks,” the news outlet added.

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Mexico’s Peña Nieto gambles in key education reform

July 22, 2015

7/21/15 Financial Times

peña-nietoMexican federal riot police took up guard outside the education institute of the state of Oaxaca, as authorities embarked on a high-stakes gamble to implement the country’s key education reform after months of paralysis.

A faction of the dissident CNTE teachers’ movement has repeatedly clashed with police, blocked roads and staged strikes and other disturbances since the reform was passed in late 2013 in a bid to ensure its stranglehold on the education system in several states is not broken, writes Jude Webber in Mexico City.

But in a surprise move, Oaxaca state governor Gabino Cué and President Enrique Peña Nieto’s spokesman announced that the State Public Education Institute of Oaxaca, known as IEEPO, was being scrapped, and that the state government would set up a new institute fully under its control.

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Mexico Homicide Rate Drops 27 Percent Since Start Of Peña Nieto’s Term

July 21, 2015

7/20/15 International Business Times

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto and first lady Angelica Rivera salute during the military parade celebrating Independence Day at the Zocalo square in downtown Mexico CityMexican President Enrique Peña Nieto was continuing to recover from a tough week that saw both the dazzling escape of drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman and a disappointing show for its historic oilfield auction. Still, there were some hopeful statistics for the president to tout: New government figures released Monday showed that homicides fell again last year from the year before, making for a continuous downward streak since Peña Nieto first took office.

The national statistics office published its most recent homicide tally Monday, showing 19,669 homicides for 2014, or a rate of 16 per 100,000 people. That marks a 27 percent decrease in homicides since 2012, when Peña Nieto first stepped into office, and a 37 percent increase since Mexican homicide figures hit their peak in 2011. The figures include intentional as well as unintentional killings.

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‘El Chapo’ Guzman will be Mexican President Pena Nieto’s legacy

July 20, 2015

7/20/15 BBC News

Bernardo Montoya/Reuters

Bernardo Montoya/Reuters

It was either anger or laughter. But it was humour that won out, at least for the first 24 hours.

Pretty soon, fake selfies appeared on social media showing El Chapo outside Trump Tower smiling. A dig, of course, at businessman Donald Trump who outraged Mexicans recently when he said those who came to the US were “bringing drugs, bringing crime, they’re rapists”.

Sarcasm and dark humour are what seem to be getting Mexicans through these difficult times.

And these times are excruciating for President Enrique Pena Nieto too.

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How El Chapo’s tunnel could bury the rival who jailed him, Mexico’s president

July 15, 2015

07/15/15 Washington Post

Enrique Pena NietoEnrique Peña Nieto was looking good, as usual.

His thick head of dark hair was smoothed back. His trim figure was packed into an elegant suit and tie. And the handsome face that had won over Mexicans — 38 percent of them at least — 18 months ago now gleamed in the center of the television camera’s frame, just between a tricolor flag and a book simply titled: Mexico.

As Peña Nieto began answering questions on air, however, it quickly became clear that Mexico’s rakish young president didn’t just look good. He felt good, too.

And why not? He had just caught the world’s most wanted criminal.

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The world’s most notorious drug lord escaping from prison is ‘almost Mexico’s worst nightmare’

July 14, 2015

07/14/15 Business Insider

Enrique Pena NietoThe capture of drug lord Joaquin Guzman was the crowning achievement of President Enrique Pena Nieto’s government in its war against drug cartels, a beacon of success amid domestic woes. That makes the bold escape by “El Chapo” from a maximum security prison all the more devastating.

A widespread manhunt that included highway checkpoints, stepped up border security and closure of an international airport failed to turn up any trace of Guzman by late Sunday, more than 24 hours after he got away.

“It’s shocking, embarrassing, a huge blow, almost everything under the sun,” Eric L. Olson, a scholar at the Mexico Institute of the Wilson Center who follows crime trends in Latin America,  told the New York Times.

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Thousands of Mexican Teachers Protest Against Education Reform

June 26, 2015

6/24/15 teleSUR

Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP - Getty Images

Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP – Getty Images

Thousands of dissident teachers took to the streets of Mexico City Wednesday, declaring a 24-hour strike to protest against the education reform promoted by President Enrique Peña Nieto. The protest follows a decision taken recently by the country’s Supreme Court which declared the reform and the controversial teacher evaluation tests to be constitutional. The evaluation is the main source of anger from the CNTE teachers’ union, which is an alternative to the mainstream national union SNTE. The teleSUR Correspondent in Mexico, Eduardo Matinez, reported that at least 10,000 teachers have joined the strike, adding that other sections of the country have taken part in the protest for the first time. Today’s march started in the capital’s Revolution Monument, before going to the Senate and concluding at a rally in the Secretariat for Public Education (SEP) headquarters.

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