Juan Carlos Gómez Aranda and Manuel Velasco Coello (@AristeguiNoticias)
On April 16, Chiapas´ state governor, Manuel Velasco Coello, announced the resignation of his General Secretary for Governance, Eduardo Ramírez Aguilar, who is to be replaced by the PRI official Juan Carlos Gómez Aranda. Ramírez Aguilar, a former mayor of Comitán, will return to the House of Deputies. In July 2013, he solicited the license for the position that he just left.
Juan Carlos Gómez Aranda was a founding member of the Federal Congress’s Commission for Concordance and Pacification, which participated in dialogues with the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN). He held the position of federal representative in the time-period during which he was coordinating the PRI Chiapas group and oversaw the Southern Border Commission. Before taking up his new charge, he was head of the Secretary for Planning, Public Management, and Government Program.
No explanation was given as to the change in the cabinet, though rumors point to differences between the Mexican Green Ecologist Party (PVEM, to which the governor belongs) and the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), in a government that has been in alliance between these two parties. Rumors indicate that the resignation of Ramírez Aguilar took place following a meeting between the state potentate and the federal Secretary for Governance (SEGOB), Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong. Other sources stress the presumed connections between the state official with a “paramilitary organized crime group” as a possible motive.
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):
Chiapas: nuevo secretario de Gobierno; el anterior, señalado por nexos con paramilitares (Aristegui Noticias, 18 abril de 2015)
Nombran nuevo secretario general en Chiapas (El Universal, 17 de abril de 2015)
Gobernador de Chiapas va a la Segob y luego cambia a su secretario de Gobierno (Proceso, 16 de abril de 2015)
La Secretaría General de Gobierno, la rifa del tigre (Chiapas Paralelo, 21 de abril de 2015)