Mexicans turned out in twenty cities throughout that country on Saturday to protest against the electoral victory of president elect Pena Nieto. They accuse Nieto’s party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), of buying votes; some carried banners saying “Not another fraud”. He was declared the winner last week after a recount of nearly half the votes and denies the allegation, as he has with repeated scandals that threatened his career. It turns out he’s quite the cad, with mistresses and recreational hookups galore–Ashleymadison.com proudly put Peña Nieto on a billboard in Mexico City, saying, “Unfaithful to his family. Faithful and committed to his country.”
Numerous videos have emerged of Mexicans claiming they received gift cards in exchange for voting for the PRI; some even claim they are coming forward because they were shortchanged. Aljazeera cites Eduardo Huchim, formerly a senior official with the Electoral Institute of Mexico City, and currently a monitor with Civic Alliance, a UN-funded watchdog, as telling the Reforma newspaper that the July 1 election was “perhaps the largest operation of vote buying and coercion in the history of the country”. Voters inMexico City, an opposition stronghold, have been posting pictures via Twitter of alleged ballot tampering.
Meanwhile, reports on twitter claimed that there were as many as 25,000 marching through the streets of Tijuana. Sandra Dibble, reporting in the UT-SD, said:
Many carried home-made signs that complained of purchased votes, complicit media, and corrupt politicians. Some were witty, others angry. “Mexico has awakened,” read one sign. “Turn off your TV and turn on your mind,” stated another.
“Many things were done behind people’s backs,” said Manuel Aramburo, a 19-year-old engineering student at the Instituto Tecnologico de Tijuana. Electoral officials “ignored the the complaints” of irregularities during the campaign, said Jorge Rodríguez, a 20-year-old economics student at the Autonomous University of Baja California.
Demonstrators in Tijuana on Saturday afternoon swarmed the Cuauhtémoc traffic circle, then marched to Avenida Revolucion and back in protest of Mexico‘s presidential election. Many members of the largely young crowd gathered at the Cuauhtémoc traffic circle identified themselves as members of the national #yosoy132 student movement formed in the weeks leading up to the election.
The “Yo soy 132” (I Am 132) movement collected more than 1,100 reports deemed sufficiently reliable to be considered evidence of electoral fraud. Of them, 96 percent were committed by members of the (PRI), while officials at polling stations or some local community power broker ere responsible for the others.
The student movement stems from an incident on May 11, when then-candidate Nieto visited the Universidad Iberoamericana and was jeered by students, who accused him of being a candidate “manufactured” by the powerful Televisa network. Those in the President-elect’s inner circle downplayed the incident, accusing the students of being a mere 131 agitators. The students counterattacked, making a YouTube video that led to the birth of the “Somos mas de 131” (We Are More Than 131) movement, which took its name from the number of students who appeared in the video and later evolved into the Yo soy 132 movement when students from other universities joined the protests.