City Council Reacts to Complaints Against the Traffic Police
(Acapulco, JG 15 June) An unusual meeting of City Council was called in the Dolores Olmedo Gallery in Acapulco’s Convention Center last night. Council members disapproved the work of the local public safety department, saying that extortions of common citizens by the traffic police continue at a high level, even while attention to common criminal incidents are being neglected.
Commissioner Ramiro Solorio Almazán (an independent) condemned the fact that traffic police riding in three compact cars, without uniforms, practically “assaulted the citizenry” at any hour of the day. “There’s no willingness to prevent crime,” he said, noting that auto thefts have risen from 3 per day to over 18. “It makes no difference if we have 50 cameras and 114 patrol cars of the city police and 80 more of the transit police. It make no difference if we have more than 300 radios and 2,000 weapons, if there’s no will to stop crime.” The councilman added, “It is true that we are afraid, all of us, but the police forces must accept more responsibility.”
Joining the criticism was PRD Councilwoman María del Rosario Martínez Mandujano, who noted that citizens in the housing projects have complained that when they report assaults and robberies, they are ignored by the authorities.
The head of public safety, Héctor Paulino Vargas López, replied, “I have noted all your complaints. The police are working, and they will continue to do so.”
Ramiro Solorio Almazán noted that the Council was meeting in the Convention Center as a symbolic gesture to show that the forum is an important part of Acapulco, and to send the message that “we are meeting in an asset that belongs to all Acapulqueños, and that we are not going to permit the Navy to build another military installation here.” He was referring to the fact that earlier this year it was revealed that the Convention Center belonged to the Federal Government, which was a surprise to almost everyone, and that the Navy was planning to install facilities there in the coming year.