On June 5th, the Regeneration Movement (MORENA) party came to power in Oaxaca for the first time in history. With 59.7% of the votes, the MORENA candidate, Salomon Jara Cruz, won, according to the National Electoral Institute (INE). In overall figures, the winner received 672 thousand votes, from almost three million people on the electoral register, according to the quick count of the State Electoral and Citizen Participation Institute. The candidate of the coalition of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), Alejandro Aviles Alvarez, was in a distant second position with less than half of the votes of his opponent: 25.75%.
Gladys Sanchez, a professor at the Benito Juarez Autonomous University of Oaxaca, confirmed: “The transportation infrastructure works promoted by the federal government (…) have influenced the support of the citizenry for MORENA. Especially in rural municipalities, where 51% of the population lives.”
The governmental election process in Oaxaca was marked by the indifference of voters, which was reflected in high abstentionism, around 62 percent of the electorate, and by the burning of ballots in several polling places in municipalities with social conflicts and affected by disasters.
With 38%, it is the lowest turnout, compared to the 2010 elections, when turnout at the polls was 85.91 percent; of 2016, with 58.64 percent, and the most recent of 2018, when 67.22 percent of the census attended.
In addition to the marked abstentionism, the election registered a peak in violence, with six murders and 43 assaults in Oaxaca, reports El Universal Oaxaca. A municipal official and political operator of the leading candidate, Carlos Eduardo L., was assassinated in Juchitan de Zaragoza. According to El Universal, despite the fact that Oaxaca “maintained a blank balance regarding the murders of players directly linked to the electoral process, in reality the state accumulated five violent deaths of politicians, among which are those of two former mayors and three militants of parties with specific activities at the municipal level.”
The foregoing, according to the Political Violence Indicator of the Etellekt risk analysis consultancy, which indicates that “Oaxaca concentrates a total of 43 of the 85 attacks against political actors that have developed within the framework of the current electoral process” of the six Mexican states that held elections on June 5th.
In other words, 51% of these attacks were recorded in the state of Oaxaca, which is why Etellekt considers Oaxaca to be the “epicenter of political violence” in this election. It is worth mentioning that the elections were hampered in some places in Oaxaca, such as by the burning of collected votes. In San Juan Guichicovi, north of the isthmus, the most serious incident occurred, where the booths in the municipal seat and in its El Encinal Colorado, Estacion Sarabia, Huisicil municipal agencies were burned, and intimidating acts were carried out by armed people at Esrtación Mogoñé Station, reports EDUCA.
According to Deutsche Welle, the next governor of Oaxaca will face a worrying situation, due to the dispute over territory between seven criminal groups; the increase in drug trafficking, homicides, and femicides. It is worth mentioning that the state, which has 4.1 million inhabitants, is in first place in terms of poverty, educational backwardness and lack of access to public health services in the country. In addition, it is in second place for the worst job creation figures. In the current context, the increase in inflation represents one of the greatest challenges, comments El Pais.
For more information in Spanish:
Morena llega al poder en Oaxaca por primera vez en la historia (El País, 5 de junio de 2022)
En picada, participación ciudadana en elecciones de Oaxaca (EDUCA, 6 de junio de 2022)
El próximo gobernador de Oaxaca enfrentaría una situación preocupante(Deutsche Welle, 6 de junio de 2022)
Oaxaca, las promesas de una «primavera» en tierra de desigualdad (El País, 4 de junio de 2022)
Con 6 asesinatos y 43 agresiones, Oaxaca llega a elección como «epicentro de violencia contra políticos» (El Universal Oaxaca, 5 de junio de 2022)
For more information from SIPAZ:
Oaxaca: Third State for Cases of Political Violence (May 23, 2021)
Oaxaca: Megaprojects and 2022 Elections: AMLO’s 24th Visit Oaxaca (December 1, 2021)
Oaxaca: Morena encabeza las elecciones en medio de una jornada violenta (June 7, 2021)