Why Some People in Mexico Are Happy to See Michoacán’s Governor Resign

Fausto Vallejo

Fausto Vallejo. Photo by Twitter user @EjeCentral.

Michoacán de Ocampo, a Mexican state located in the west of the country, has seen an alarming wave of violence in the last year, a topic of Global Voices coverage on several occasions.

Now, the state's Governor Fausto Vallejo will leave his post, reportedly for health reasons.

The news was first announced by journalist Joaquín López-Dóriga via Twitter:

Fausto Vallejo has confirmed to me that he will remove himself from the Michoacán government for health reasons, and has already informed President Enrique Peña Nieto, as I advised.

User Madame Déficit expressed the following on the news of Vallejo’s resignation:

The day that so many Mexicans have been waiting for! The inept Fausto Vallejo (surrounded by corrupt people) is leaving the Michoacán government.

In the same vein, L’Homme Virtuel wrote:

[It’s] official, the useless governor of #Michoacán Fausto Vallejo is leaving office. We’re only lacking his buddies, from Jalisco [Governor] Aristóteles Sandoval and [Mexican President] Enrique Peña Nieto.

Earlier, journalist Carlos Loret de Mola had reported that a meeting occurred between Vallejo’s son with organized crime leaders, which had potentially sensitive implications:

Me lo han confirmado tres fuentes del más alto nivel en el gabinete de seguridad del presidente Enrique Peña Nieto: Rodrigo Vallejo Mora, hijo del gobernador de Michoacán, aparece con Servando Gómez Martínez “La Tuta” en uno de los videos incautados en una casa de seguridad del Cártel de Los Caballeros Templarios.

Three sources, from the highest levels of the security cabinet of President Enrique Peña Nieto, have confirmed: Rodrigo Vallejo Mora, the governor of Michoacan’s son, appears with Servando Gómez Martínez “La Tuta” in one of the videos seized in a Knights Templar Cartel safe house.

After questioning the political machinations that have been used to keep Fausto Vallejo in power, Loret de Mola pointed out:

El gobernador Fausto Vallejo dijo en Radio Fórmula a Joaquín López-Dóriga que se va a ausentar unos días de su cargo para someterse a un chequeo médico a mediados de junio. Podría ser una coyuntura.

Governor Fausto Vallejo told Joaquín López-Dóriga on Radio Fórmula that he is going to be absent from his post for a few days to undergo a medical check-up in mid-June. It could be a critical juncture.

It isn’t only Vallejo’s son who has been tied to organized crime, but also his former “number 2”, who served as the government secretary of Michoacán, according to Ciro Gómez Leyva:

De ahí la relevancia de la caída en desgracia del coordinador de la campaña de Fausto Vallejo al gobierno de Michoacán, dos veces secretario de Gobierno en esa administración y gobernador interino por seis meses, Jesús Reyna, hoy bajo arraigo y ya degradado políticamente por sus presuntos nexos con Los caballeros templarios.

Se prueben o no los vínculos (recuerdo las cuatro entregas publicadas aquí entre el 5 y el 8 de agosto pasado, sobre la forma en que Reyna y los suyos quisieron negar el secuestro del viejo ganadero Joaquín Ponce de León), el presidente Peña Nieto parece haber mandado la señal de que quien desobedezca las órdenes para enfrentar a los criminales no debería dormir tranquilo.

Hence, the significance of the fall from grace of Fausto Vallejo’s campaign director for the governorship of Michoacán, twice government secretary in that administration and acting governor for six months, Jesús Reyna, now under arrest and already politically abandoned because of his alleged links to the Knights Templar.

Whether or not the ties are proven (remember the four installments published here between August 5 and 8, regarding the way Reyna and his [associates] tried to deny kidnapping the elderly rancher Joaquín Ponce de León), President Peña Nieto seems to have sent a signal that whoever disobeys the orders to take on the criminals will not rest easy.

Regarding the fact that Vallejo told the president and not the electorate about his decision, Arih Uriel said:

Who chose Fausto Vallejo? Peña Nieto or the Michoacans? First he notifies the president and then by Twitter to the governed, really?

Augusto Íñigo, meanwhile, took the opportunity to satirize the announcement and the fact that the King of Spain would cease to be king in the next few hours:

The conspirators didn’t waste any time seeing a suspicious coincidence that the same day the King of Spain signed his abdication, Fausto Vallejo signed his resignation.

With Vallejo’s exit, the legislature will need to appoint an interim governor to exercise Vallejo's functions for the remainder of the period for which Vallejo was elected.

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