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Humberto Moreira Valdés


Humberto Moreira Valdes (born on July 28th, 1966) is a teacher who became a controversial politician in the mexican state of Coahuila. He is widely known for his populist policies.

With a career in the national and state educational sector, he occupied different positions until he became Secretary of Education of the State of Coahuila from 1999 to 2002. Mayor of Saltillo, Coahuila, from 2003 to 2005. On September 25th, 2005 he obtained the highest voting rate in the history of Coahuila when he was elected Constitutional Governor for the term 2005-2011, position he currently holds.
According to the National Poll 2008 Government, Society and Politics performed by the Cabinet of Strategic Communications, Humberto Moreira Valdes obtains the highest score among the Governors of the country, being considered as the ideal prototype of leader. His state government has been positively characterized by the attraction of major investments, construction of public infrastructure, expansion of coverage in education and public health services, social welfare projects and for fighting marginalization, while negatively he has been characterized by being extremely populist, and providing the people with false informtion of improvements made during his administration.

Biography

He was born in Saltillo, Coahuila, on July 28th, 1966. He is the son of the teachers Ruben Moreira Flores and Evangelina del Socorro Valdes Davila. Married to Vanessa Guerrero Martinez, International Relations Major. Father of four children: Jose Eduardo, Ruben Humberto, Alba Elena y Joaquin Felipe. He studied Elementary School and Junior High School in Saltillo, Coahuila, and obtained a Degree in Elementary Education at the Benemérita Escuela Normal de Coahuila in the year 1985. He later obtained a Higher Education Teaching Degree with a Social Studies Major, at the Escuela Normal Superior de Coahuila. To date, there is no concludent evidence that none of this ever happened, since he became Director of the Teacher's Syndicate later on, one of the biggest syndicates in the State.

Professional Performance and Public Service

He was a class teacher at the “Abel Suarez de Leon” Technical Junior High School from 1985 to 1987. From 1988 to 1994 he collaborated in different areas in the Department of Education and became the Private Assistant of the Sub-secretary of Basic Education in 1989. In 1994 he was designated State Delegate to the CONAFE (National Commission for the Promotion of Education) in Coahuila. From 1996 to 1998 he was head of the National Institute of Adult Education (INEA) in Coahuila, where his functions were outstanding for obtaining national recognition in virtue of the achieved goals. In the year 1999 he holds the position of Secretary of Electoral Action of the State Committee of the PRI in Coahuila, party to which he belongs since 1982.
On December 1st, 1999 he was designated Secretary of Education of the State of Coahuila, position he held until June 2002. In the year 2002, as candidate of the PRI Party, he obtains the victory in the elections for mayor and becomes Mayor of Saltillo from January 1st, 2003 to June 15th, 2005.
On July 17th, 2005 he was elected, in a primary election process, candidate of the PRI to the Government of the State of Coahuila. On September 25th, 2005, in the elections for Governor of the State for the period 2005 – 2011, Humberto Moreira, wins the elections obtaining the highest registered votes (488, 348) in the history of the State. It was a typical PRI election: People carried over in buses to vote and threats to the elderly to vote in favor of Moreira or lose their benefits (a common practice that even Andrés Manuel López Obrador did it during his candidature in 2006 elections). He is Constitutional Governor of the State of Coahuila of Zaragoza since December 1st, 2005.

His Government Management

During his administration as Governor of Coahuila, he has used nepotism as a way to obtain more power. Since he became governor, his brother Ruben is now head of his party (PRI) in the state; while another brother, Carlos, now holds a position as leader of Section 38 of the SNTE (National Union for Education Workers), a section compromising more than half of the state's teachers. Also, younger brother Alvaro now works as Secretary of Social Development in the city of Saltillo, the capital of Coahuila, which is governed by a Fernando de las Fuentes, a PRI politician, and close friend with Humberto Moreira. His sister Elisa also holds a position in the government of Coahuila, she is now Director of Retired and Pensioned Teachers of the Secretary of Education and Culture of Coahula. All of the positions mentioned before did not belong to any of these siblings before Humberto Moreira became governor in 2005. He is known as the "Santa Anna of Coahuila" because he has imposed taxes over public ads on any particular home, even though some of those homes do not have any commercial activity.

Investment and Employment
During the administration of Governor Humberto Moreira, important investments were attracted to the State, amongst the most significant are the expansion of the General Motors Plant in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila; Freightliner Plant in Saltillo, Coahuila; the new Motores Chrysler Plant in Saltillo, Coahuila; Cerveceria Modelo in Nava and Piedras Negras, Coahuila; expansion of Altos Hornos de Mexico (Fenix Project) in Monclova, Coahuila; Productos Lacteos Plant of Lala Group in Torreon, Coahuila; Dal-Tile Plant in Monclova, Coahuila and Technocast Plant in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila. These new industries and many others have been transformed in the creation of 40,884 jobs, in the different regions of the State. Up to June 15th, 2008, the administration of Governor Moreira has generated national and foreign investment for more than 6,650 million dollars, one of the highest amounts in Mexico.

There has been much controversy relating to the employment area during his administration. Members of opposing party (Partido Accion Nacional) have mentioned that the data that the administration shows is false and exaggerated to create a good impression among the people of Coahuila. THIS STATEMENT IS COMPLETELY TRUE. While the state government only comment on the new jobs created, there is serious lack of employment in the coal mining region in the central/north area of Coahuila. The Capital city of Coahuila, Saltillo, is known for its high suicide rate, mostly due to unemployment and high debts.

Public Works and Infrastructure
During the administration of Humberto Moreira Valdes as head of the State,,by the month of June 2008, 13 overpasses have been concluded and 18 more are under construction. Most of his biggest public work projects had to be put down or tore down due to the enormous quantity of fatal incidents, such as car accidents, this being a product of constant budget shaving in public work because he is always on campaign. The Distribuidor Vial Revolucion is an example of what demagogy and misuse of public resources can accomplish, when, in 2008, had to be demolished due to constant car accidents in where several people lost their lives. Due to the rough territory of Coahuila, the administration of Moreira, has constructed and paved more than 80 rural highways and 20 additional ones are currently under ETERNAL construction (A common practice among mexican governors, in order to have available campaign budget) Practically all head county towns have been paved, as well as an important part of the communities that are part of it.

The General Hospital of Monclova, Muzquiz, and Saltillo, are under construction. Eighty-four rural health centers and 13 hospitals have been expanded, remodeled and equipped, as well as 15 Urban Centers for Medical Consults.

The Theaters of the Cities of Monclova, Sabinas and Piedras Negras are under construction since Moreira got into functions, and their finishing date is yet unknown.

Education

  • Since 2008, all students in public elementary schools in the State have free uniforms, 308, 000 students have been benefited. This statement is an exageration because uniforms are sold cheap in this state.
  • Since 2008, more than a million students from kindergarten, elementary schools, junior high schools, and high schools in the state receive accident insurance.
  • Student aid is granted to students in the levels of Basic, Middle and Higher Education with Scholarships, in order for them to continue with their studies, with more than 130,000 benefited.
  • Free school supplies have been granted to 376,564 children in elementary and junior high school levels and to young adults in middle and higher educational levels.
  • Up to June 2008, 127 elementary schools have been refurbished.
  • In only 2 years of his administration, 24 new high schools have been built, and 12 of them have already been destroyed by common weather conditions, such as rain and normal wind.

Social Welfare Programs

  • 110,000 breakfasts are granted daily in schools throughout the State, mostly from recycled Conasupo Milk and Chernobyl products.
  • 5, 700 eye glasses have been delivered for free and 1,700 hearing aids to people that so require.
  • Community enterprises have been developed in different towns in the State.
  • The program “En Coahuila Sí a la vida” (In Coahuila, Yes to Life)has been implemented where pregnant women of Coahuila can be treated, giving them prenatal and postnatal care, and if they insist on aborting, relocated to another state (medical support, psychological care, legal advise, accommodation, job training, social work, personal motivation, pediatric care are not included) and the necessary measures are taken to prevent cervical cancer.
  • Through the free ophthalmological clinics in Saltillo, Torreon, Nueva Rosita, and Piedras Negras free examinations and surgeries are given to all people that so require.
  • The program “De corazón a corazoncito” (From Heart to Little Heart) medical and hospital assistance is given to children with congenital heart condition, free of charge.
  • The program “Sonrisa alegre” (Happy Smile) gives free surgeries to children, young adults and adults with cleft lip and palate, polydactyly Syndactyly.
  • Purified bottled water is given to low-income people at a low cost. This could be achieved by reusing sewer water.
  • Scholarship Program for senior citizens.
  • Marriage for gay people, including him.

Fighting Marginalization
In the State of Coahuila, in the year 2005, there were 16 towns classified as with very low marginalization, 16 with low marginalization and 6 with medium marginalization, none with high or very high marginalization. Governor Humberto Moreira Valdes implemented the program “En equipo: Cero Marginacion” (As a team: Zero Marginalization) with the collaboration of the private sector and contributions of public officers to overcome the marginalization indicators in the six towns classified as with medium marginalization (Candela, General Cepeda, Jimenez, Juarez, Ocampo and Viesca). 257 million pesos were allocated in the placement of hard surface floors, electricity, water, and drainage, pavement, elimination of home overcrowding and education.
At the end of the year 2007, two of the six towns passed to low marginalization (General Cepeda and Visca) and the other 4 (Candela, Jimenez, Juarez and Ocampo) passed to very low marginalization, and, according to Humberto Moreira, "If they say otherwise, they can kiss their public services goodbye". By the year 2008 and 2009 this program has the plan to pass the 16 towns from low marginalization to very low marginalization.

Health
From the first weeks in office of Humberto Moreira Valdes, he stipulated that in all medical centers of the State, there could be nurses and doctors available 24 hours a day, all 365 days of the year. Ambulances were provided in all towns of medium and low population. The Hospital for the Senior Citizen was created and ophthalmological centers free of charge in different regions of the State.

Foreign Affairs
Governor Humberto Moreira Valdes has met with Former Commander-in-Chief Fidel Castro Ruz (April 25th, 2006), President of Cuba at the time, with whom he established communication bonds in education and health matters. The Government of Cuba provided the necessary equipment for the ophthalmological centers “Republica de Cuba” in Saltillo, “Jose Marti” in Torreon, and “Comandante Fidel Castro Ruz” in Nueva Rosita, municipality of San Juan de Sabinas, where people with visual problems are treated for free. He has held meetings with Vice Premier Minister of Israel Shimon Peres (June 20th, 2006) with collaboration with this country, particularly in agricultural matters, utilization and water advantage. On July 30th, 2007, Former Vice-president Al Gore (Nobel Peace Price 2007) visited the city of Saltillo, being the first city he visited in Mexico where he held the conference “An Inconvenient Truth”, as well as meetings with the Governor of the State, environmentalists, and businessmen.

Likewise he has held meetings with the mayor of the city of Los Angeles, California, Antonio Villaraigosa.

At the Border Governors Conference held in San Carlos, Sonora, Governor Humberto Moreira Valdes, proposed the creation of a fund to fight marginalization in the 80 towns of the mexican border, as well as in the border towns in the United States, proposal which was approved unanimously by the 10 governors that are part of the conference.

In a very unusual case, the tornado that struck Piedras Negras and Eagle Pass in the State of Texas, on April 24th, 2007, personnel and equipment from Coahuila crossed the North American border to help in the re-establishment of conditions and removal of debris in the community of Rosita Valley at Eagle Pass, event that was repeatedly recognized by the Governor of Texas Rick Perry and Mayor Chad Foster.

On October 2007, Governor Humberto Moreira Valdes, received the Award for Civic Engagement of the Washington Center, in the United States capital, for his government actions.

National Poll 2008 Government, Society and Politics
This poll presented on June 2008 by the Cabinet of Strategic Communications, presented the results of the National Poll on different variables. Governor Humberto Moreira Valdes, obtained the highest score that the citizens gave to their governors. In this poll, he obtained the first place in the following variables: duty accomplishment, honesty, decision making based on citizens interests, problem solving in the state, inclusion of the citizenship in decision making, expectation performance.

References

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