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5:03, 01 July 2018

Mexico elections: Polls due to open after campaign marred by violence


Mexico elections: Polls due to open soon after campaign marred by violence

Polls are due to open across Mexico for Sunday’s presidential, parliamentary and neighborhood elections.

Front-runner for president is Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the left-wing former mayor of Mexico City who has pledged to crack down on corruption.

If he wins he will oust the two parties that have governed Mexico for nearly a century.

However, campaigning has been marred by some of the worst political violence in the country for decades.

BBC Mexico correspondent Will Grant says a lot of voters are keen to replace the government of incumbent President Enrique Pe&ntildea Nieto. They are angry at Mexico’s sluggish economy as effectively as widespread corruption and crime, he adds.

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador – usually referred to by his initials Amlo – has made tackling corruption the central plank of his campaign, promising to improve wages and pensions by stamping out rampant abuse by the state and by political and organization elites.

Mr Lopez Obrador, 64, was runner-up in the final two elections and if he wins this time he will finish the dominance of the two parties that have governed Mexico for decades – the Institutional Revolutionary Celebration (PRI) and the National Action Celebration (PAN).

He has referred to them as becoming element of the very same “mafia of power”, putting forward a left-wing coalition led by his party, Morena, as a opportunity to make a radical break with the past.

His closest rival looks to be Ricardo Anaya of PAN who heads a centre-proper coalition. He has tried to paint Mr Lopez Obrador as a populist and a maverick who can not be trusted to run the economy.

The candidate for the governing PRI celebration is Jos&eacute Antonio Meade, a former finance minister.

As effectively as a new president, Mexican will be voting for 128 senators and 500 deputies in Congress as nicely as state and local officials. In all, 88 million individuals will be eligible to vote.

Mexico is the second largest economy in Latin America and a main oil exporter. Nevertheless, oil costs have dropped and the Mexican currency, the peso, has fallen sharply against the dollar.

Much more than 40% of the population lives in poverty and higher levels of corruption and violence have led some organizations to pull out of the worst impacted locations.

The run-up to Sunday’s elections has seen some of the worst violence in living memory, our correspondent says, as criminal groups try to handle neighborhood politics.

Much more than 130 candidates and political workers have been killed across the country since campaigning began in September.

On Saturday, a journalist was shot dead in a bar in the village of Saban in the southern state of Quintana Roo, officials mentioned. Mexico has a reputation for becoming a single of the most harmful nations in the globe for journalists.

Published at Sun, 01 Jul 2018 03:35:42 +0000


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