Riviera Maya, Q.R. — On Monday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said his government still intends to inaugurate his Maya Train project in December of 2023. However, during his recent work tour of the southern section, he was faced with opposition by Ejidos.
During his Monday morning press conference, López Obrador said that opposition by the Ejidos would only mean that section does not get finished. AMLO said that opposition from five Ejidos along the Xpujil to Chetumal Maya Train route in the far south could prevent it from being completed.
During his October 15th work tour in Quintana Roo, he was faced with protests by Ejidatarios who were demanding compensation payment along the 500-kilometer stretch where the train is set for construction.
López Obrador said that the opposition is from leaders who represent corrupt practices since the compensation they demand is for projects on the highway to Chetumal which was built more than 50 years ago.
“It turns out that on the section from Xpujil to Chetumal there are five Ejidos whose leaders do not want the train to pass, or they do want it, but they are conditioning the Ministry of Communications and Transportation to pay them compensation from when the highway to Chetumal was built,” he said.
“I have given instructions for them to talk to the people, follow the assemblies and make the commitment where the line of the train goes, it will be paid with an appraisal because we cannot pay more than what the appraisal establishes.
“And if it is true that 50 years ago they built the highway and they were not compensated, then in addition to the appraisal, the percentage should be considered,” he explained.
López Obrador said that he commissioned those responsible for the Maya Train project to attend assemblies to hear the opinion of the people, adding that those who are opposing it have nothing to do with the interests of the people of the region, but with their personal interests. He also accused the Ejido leaders of corruption.
“They have not wanted to call an assembly because I am sure that if an assembly is called, people will say ‘yes we want the Maya Train’, but this is a matter of leaders who are wanting to take advantage of the project.
“The corruption comes from afar and it must be banished. I have given instructions so that they talk to the people, hold the assemblies and make the commitment that wherever the section of train goes it will be paid for,” he explained.
“And if after that there are still blockades and they don’t let us build, the train to Xpujil will end and there will be no train from Xpujil to Chetumal (…) and they will know who was responsible for ending this project,” he said.
López Obrador reported that as of 2023, he will start performing Maya Train supervision tours every 15 days to accelerate construction to ensure it is ready in December of 2023. He says his goal is to have the train up and running for several months before his term ends in September of 2024.