México
Mexico's main opponent denounced López Obrador's persecution and left the country
National Autonomist Party member Ricardo Anaya accused AMLO of inventing a court case to remove him from the 2024 elections.

Former presidential candidate and former PAN legislator Ricardo Anaya Cortés denounced the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador for initiating a judicial persecution to imprison him and remove him from the 2024 presidential elections.

The Mexican leader is considered a fugitive from justice after leaving the country and failing to comply with an order issued by the Attorney General's Office (FGR) to appear before a court in Mexico City's North Prison to answer for the crimes of money laundering and illicit enrichment, which he is accused of.

In this context, the member of the PAN party posted on social media an explosive video in which he accused the government of altering the statements of former Pemex director Emilio Lozoya to incriminate him in the vote-buying scheme to approve Enrique Peña Nieto's electricity reform.

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"The news is that AMLO wants to put me in jail with lies and two Balinese witnesses. López Obrador wants to take me out of the game, since I hinder his plans of succession for 2024. He doesn't want me to be a candidate. And he wants to imprison me because he doesn't like what I say," says the video by Anaya, who lost to López Obrador in the 2018 elections has currently been touring the country for the past year as a sign of his intention to run again in the next presidential elections.

"López Obrador is uncomfortable with the fact that we point out his stupidities, because children with cancer do not have access to medicine, his electricity reform has been destroying the environment, poverty has increased, but above all, it bothers him that his promise to end corruption turned out to be a fraud," Anaya added, mentioning the cases involving the houses of the director of the Federal Electricity Commission (CEF) Manuel Bartlett, former Civil Service Secretary Irma Eréndira Sandoval, and the case of López Obrador's two brothers, who were recorded receiving cash.

The opposition leader said "if you make a president, who is obsessed with having all the power, feel uncomfortable, if he cannot stand being criticized, then the solution is to get you out of the way, to take you out of the game." In addition, he said that everything was ready a month ago to file the lawsuit against him in the Lozoya case, but they realized that the file was "made 'with a pig's ear' and they were going to make a fool of themselves."

"Before, they said that on August 8, 2014 I had been given money in exchange for my vote, But they realized that at that time I was not a congressman and I was not even in Mexico City. Well, what do you think these wretched people did? They changed the story," he says, and added: "With the patch done, they are ready to proceed against me."

With the news that AMLO wants to put me in jail, with lies and two Balinese witnesses. López Obrador wants to take me out of the game, since I hinder his plans of succession in 2024.


López Obrador responded through his Facebook account, where he denied the accusations of his former rival in the last presidential election.

"I have nothing to do with the persecution of Ricardo Anaya. Revenge is not my style. If the Prosecutor's Office and the Judiciary are accusing him of corruption and he is innocent, he should not seek protection or flee; he should defended himself through evidence and with the truth," the president wrote. "It is no longer the past: there may be politicians in prison, but not political prisoners," he added.

In turn, the head of state asked that the Prosecutor General's Office disclose aspects of the investigation because it is a matter of "public interest," something that cannot be done for due process.

Faced with this, Anaya announced his departure from the country because "they are ready to proceed against me," but it is not currently clear what his whereabouts are.

The National Cabinet confirmed that, at this time, the former presidential candidate is in Atlanta where he owns a property. However, the PAN party members believe that his final destination will be Canada, where he has a greater judicial protection.

I have nothing to do with the persecution of Ricardo Anaya. Revenge is not my style. If the Prosecutor's Office and the Judiciary are accusing him of corruption and he is innocent, he should not seek protection or flee; he should defended himself through evidence and with the truth.


General Audomaro Zapata, head of government's intelligence center, brought to the National Palace the information that Anaya is in the United States, informed by former Foreign Minister Jorge Castaneda, who has good ties in the neighboring country.

This would in fact not be a brand new scenario, since in the 2018 campaign, during the war between Anaya and Los Pinos Castañeda, a central figure of the defeat, he had to intervene to prevent Enrique Peña Nieto from using his ties with the staff of Donald Trump in order to force irreversible retaliation against the candidate of the PAN-MC-PRD front.

Members of the PAN party believe that Anaya could be in the United States, but his final destination would be Canada, a country that is more sensitive to issues of alleged political persecution and where it is not so easy for extradition to be granted.

López Obrador has been carrying out a series of fights with democratic institutions that consolidate an authoritarian turn that has been denounced by the opposition. He first accused the Supreme Court of Justice of being "rotten" and tried to intervene to extend the term of office of the president, who is an ally of the government to advance the judicial reform. 

General Audomaro Zapata, head of government's intelligence center, brought to the National Palace the information that Anaya is in the United States, informed by former Foreign Minister Jorge Castaneda, who has good ties in the neighboring country.

After that dispute, he described the National Electoral Institute as an opponent and said that he wanted "a categorical reform" of the electoral system.

The opposition alliance "Vamos por México" that prevented AMLO from retaining an absolute majority in Parliament in the last legislative elections, denounced that the President wants to retain complete public power in a process that they consider similar to what took place in Venezuela with Nicolás Maduro. 

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