Mexican President-Elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador promised on Sunday to take a salary cut on assuming office in December as part of an austerity drive. He will earn less than half of what current President Enrique Pena Nieto makes each month, AP reported.
Lopez Obrador won a landslide victory in Mexico’s presidential election on July 1. He is the first Leftist president since Mexico became a democracy more than 30 years ago. Soon after the win, he vowed to crack down on corruption and wage a war on drugs.
Speaking to reporters outside his campaign headquarters on Sunday, Lopez Obrador said he would earn 108,000 pesos a month (approximately around Rs 3.94 lakh). Pena Nieto, on the other hand, earned 270,000 pesos (around Rs 9.85 lakh), according to the estimation by the transition team, he said.
Lopez Obrador also promised that no public official will earn more than him during his six-year term. “What we want is for the budget to reach everybody,” he said.
As part of the government’s proposed austerity push, the president-elect vowed to do away with taxpayer-funded perks such as bodyguards, drivers, and private medical insurance for high-level government officials. The official presidential residence will be converted into a cultural centre and former presidents will no longer receive pensions, he was quoted as saying.
Lopez Obrador also said public officials will have to disclose their assets and corruption will be considered a serious offence.
Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index for 2017 ranked Mexico 135th of 180 countries, indicating the high corruption in the country.