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Monday, August 31, 2015

Mexican President changes Ten Secretaries in his Cabinet

By Octavio N. Cervantes (El Semanario)


Just days before his Third State of the Nation Report is due (September 1), Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto has announced ten changes in his cabinet.

From the official Los Pinos residence, the president thanked the following outgoing ministers for their work: Juan José Guerra Abud, Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources; Enrique Martínez y Martínez, Secretary of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Alimentation; Emilio Chuayffet, Secretary of Public Education; Jesús Murillo Karam, Secretary of Agrarian, Territorial and Urban Development; Monte Alejandro Rubido García, head of the National Public Security Commission; and Luis Antonio Godina Herrera, head of the State Workers' Social Security and Services Institute.

The new appointments:

ROSARIO ROBLES: Secretary of Agrarian, Territorial and Urban Development.  Robles was the chief of government of the Federal District (Mayor of Mexico City) from 1999 to 2000.  Prior to that she served a three year congressional term as a Federal Deputy.  She is considered a founding member of the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), whereas in 2012 she was named coordinator of a women's network during the presidential campaign of now President Peña Nieto.

JOSÉ CALZADA: Secretary of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Alimentation. Calzada is the outgoing Governor of Querétaro (October 1), and he served in the Senate from 2006 to 2009.

RAFAEL PACCHIANO: Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources.  Pacchiano has been serving in management in the secretariat's Environmental Protection division. He has served as a federal congressmen, and he was coordinator of the Youth Program on the transition team of then President-elect Peña Nieto.

ENRIQUE DE LA MADRID: Secretary of Tourism. De la Madrid has been the Director General of the National Foreign Trade Bank (Bancomext).  He has served as General Technical Coordinator of the presidency of the National Banking and Securities Commission, and he was a federal congressman from 2000 to 2003.

FRANCISCO GUZMÁN: Head of the Office of the Presidency. He moves up from the position of Coordinator of Advisors in the Office of the Presidency.

RENATO SALES: National Security Commissioner. Sales steps away from the post of National Anti-kidnapping Commissioner.  He is a past deputy attorney general with the federal Attorneys General office, and he served as Attorney General in the State of Campeche.

AURELIO NUÑO: Secretary of Public Education. He was an advisor to Enrique Peña Nieto when the latter was governor of the State of Mexico.  In 2012 he was the coordinator of Dissemination and Marketing for the presidential campaign.

JOSÉ ANTONIO MEADE: Secretary of Social Development.  Meade leaves the post of Secretary of Foreign Affairs.  In the past, he has also served as Secretary of Treasury and Public Credit, and Secretary of Energy; plus he has held a number of high-level positions in the finance ministry and in other public sector financial institutions and agencies. note: Some commentators see this position change as a means to expand Meade's portfolio in the run-up to his possible presidential candidacy for the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) in 2018.  Yet, at this early moment more pundits are putting their money on Manlio Fabio Beltrones, a longtime super power in Mexican PRI politics who recently took over as national president of the party, to be the PRI's candidate.

CLAUDIA RUIZ MASSIEU: Secretary of Foreign Relations. Ruiz leaves the post of Secretary of Tourism. She has been a federal deputy on two occasions; coordinator of Planning, Development and Innovation in the Attorneys General office; and in 2012 she was the coordinator of Human Rights and Transparency on the transition team of President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto. note: Ruiz, an attorney, is the niece of former President Carlos Salinas de Gortari (her mother, Adriana, is Salinas' sister).  Her father, José Francisco Ruiz Massieu, a former governor of Guerrero and top ranking official in the PRI, was assassinated in Mexico City in 1994.

JOSÉ REYES BAEZA: Director General of the State Workers' Social Security and Services Institute. Reyes was a federal deputy, municipal president (mayor) of Chihuahua City, and governor of the state of Chihuahua (2004-2010).


"Cambios en el Gabinete Presidencial," El Semanario, Mexico City, Aug. 27, 2015; edited translation

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