Ignacio Ovalle, recycled technocrat – Arsenal

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For. Jose C. Serrano

Ignacio Ovalle Fernandez, 76 years old, an ideal profile for the 4T gerontocracy, is a lawyer graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM); His first public position was that of head of the Street Vendors office, attached to the Ministry of the Interior (Segob); the head of the department was Luis Echeverria Alvarez (LEA), who later named him his private secretary.

He passed with that same position to the electoral campaign of Echeverría when he was nominated as a candidate of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) for the Presidency of the Republic. LEA held the First Magistracy of the country from December 1, 1970 to November 30, 1976.

Ignacio Ovalle, from being a private secretary, was promoted to undersecretary of the Secretariat of the Presidency and head of the same from October 3, 1975 until the end of the government of Echeverría Álvarez.

As of 1976, President José López Portillo y Pacheco appointed Ovalle General Director of the National Indigenous Institute (INI), a position from which he was removed on January 21, 1977, as of that date he became General Coordinator of the Plan. National Program for Depressed Areas and Marginalized Groups (COPLAMAR).

In 1982, at the beginning of the government of Miguel de la Madrid HurtadoOvalle was appointed ambassador of Mexico in Argentina (1983-1987), later, he would be ambassador of Mexico in Cuba until a year later.

In 1988, the president Carlos Salinas de Gortari appointed him general director of the National Popular Subsistence Company (CONASUPO), thus initiating a process to liquidate it, putting its assets up for sale, and closing its stores to the public, in addition to ending the acquisition of grains at guaranteed prices at farmers.

Ovalle had the brilliant idea of ​​launching a subsidy that he called tortivale, which consisted of giving away one kilogram of tortillas, daily, to families considered to be in a vulnerable situation. Such an initiative was severely criticized and considered populist and intended to buy the vote.

Consequently, they requested his resignation in 1990. He went to the PRI with his bones, as Secretary of Social Management of the National Executive Committee of the tricolor, which at that time was chaired by the Sonoran Luis Donaldo Colosio Murrieta.

Between 1977 and 2017 he was weaned from the generous udder, known as the federal budget. On August 16, 2018, the elected president of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) announced that, at the beginning of his government, he would appoint Ignacio Ovalle Fernández as head of the new body called Mexican Food Security (Segalmex)formed by the merger of Diconsa and Liconsa, successors of the disappeared Conasupo. She remained in office until April 19, 2022.

On instructions from AMLO, the Secretary of the Interior, Adam Augusto Lopez Hernandez, gave possession on the same April 19 to Leonel Efrain Cota Montaño, former governor of Baja California Sur, as general director of Segalmex, replacing Ovalle Fernández. The replacement occurs when the public entity is shaken by allegations of irregularities made by the Superior Audit of the Federation (ASF).

In an act that arouses suspicion, Ignacio Ovalle Fernández was appointed by AMLO as coordinator of the National Institute for Federalism and Municipal Development (Inafed), attached to Segob.

Government auditors have announced that, only in the 2020 Public Account, the possible irregularities detected by the ASF in Segalmex amount to 8.6 billion pesos.

The appropriate thing to do, given the size of the embezzlement, would be to remove Ovalle Fernández from his position, and initiate an investigation process that sheds light on the gloomy panorama in the body that is in charge of promoting food security and nutrition.

The haste with which the new appointment of Ignacio Ovalle Fernández occurred, calls into question the president’s inability to decide reflexively and in accordance with the law.

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