After a tight virtual discussion, the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation declared constitutional the popular consultation proposed by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to decide whether to prosecute five former presidents of the country for corruption, among which are Enrique Peña Nieto and Felipe Calderón.
The judges of the SCJN held virtual sessions for the COVID-19 pandemic and in a tight vote, six magistrates defended the constitutionality of the consultation and five argued that it was unconstitutional.
Now, the magistrates will discuss whether the way in which the question was formulated is correct or whether some changes to the referendum are necessary.
The ministers who declared that of the consultation are: Arturo Zaldívar Lelo de Larrea, Alfredo Gutiérrez Ortiz Mena, Alberto Gelacio Pérez Dayán, Juan Luis González Alcántara Carrancá, Yasmín Esquivel Mossa and Ana Margarita Ríos Farjat.
While for the unconstitutionality they voted: Javier Laynez Potisek, José Fernando Franco González-Salas, Jorge Mario Pardo Rebolledo, Luis María Aguilar Morales and Norma Lucía Piña Hernández.
The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Arturo Saldívar affirmed that “the Court must not frustrate citizen participation.”
López Obrador, who assumed power in 2018 with a fierce speech against the corruption of previous governments, sent the Senate the initiative for citizens to choose whether the current government should investigate and, where appropriate, bring former presidents to trial.
Although the president is the main promoter of this consultation, supported by some two million citizen signatures, López Obrador said that he would vote against prosecuting them because he wants to avoid “revenge.”
With information from agencies