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Monday, September 26, 2022

Over 70% in Yucatán agree that corruption is a serious problem

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
Corruption has long been a major problem in Yucatán and Mexico in general, with most simply accepting it as a fact of life. Photo: Wikimedia Foundation

In a recent poll conducted by the INEGI, 71% of adults in Yucatán reported that corruption is a serious problem in the state. 

Of the total respondents, 38% said that corruption had severely impacted their lives and that the problem only seems to be getting worse. 

Of those who claim to be victims of corruption, 71.5 percent say they don’t know the process to file a complaint.

Corruption is among the top citizen complaints, both in Yucatán and nationally. Low wages make employees with any authority susceptible to payoffs — which nationwide are thought to total hundreds of millions of pesos.

People in Yucatán are also growing more suspicious of mega projects such as the recently announced new Mérida airport, which is widely thought to be unnecessary and intended mainly to benefit politically connected investors. 

According to the INEGI poll, the most corrupt organizations in the state are political parties, followed by the state police, justice ministers, and municipal officials. 

Earlier: What is the holdup with Mexico’s Patria COVID-19 vaccine?

At a national level, perceptions of corruption are also extremely high, despite reassurances by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador that corruption at the highest levels of government is a thing of the past. 

But Mexicans remain skeptical, especially as a recent scandal involving the president’s own children and the Sembrando Vidas reforestation program made headlines across the country. 

Also drawing the ire of Mexicans is the appointment of politicians with long documented histories of corruption to highly coveted positions at state-owned companies, including the CFE and Pemex

At the local level in Mérida, the situation is not any better, as anti-corruption organizations such as the anti-corruption office itself are widely perceived to be extremely corrupt. 

Adding to the distrust is a sense that even if formal corruption complaints are lodged these will ultimately be brushed under the rug, adding to Mexico’s already staggering problem of impunity. 

In developing countries, according to the United Nations Development Program, funds lost to corruption are estimated at 10 times the amount of official development assistance.

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