MEXICO CITY – Cuauhtemoc Cardenas has resigned as a member of Mexico’s Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), the party he founded 25 years ago and served as standard bearer in the 1994 and 2000 presidential elections.
“I am resigning irrevocably as a member of the Party of the Democratic Revolution,” the 80-year-old Cardenas said in a letter to the party’s leadership, citing disagreements with actions taken by the PRD’s Executive Committee.
Cardenas met with PRD chairman Carlos Navarrete on Tuesday and asked him to take steps to restore the party’s credibility among the public.
The meeting with Navarrete came “too late” and exposed the “deep differences in our visions of how to deal with the party’s internal problems,” Cardenas said in his resignation letter.
Cardenas recently called on Navarrete to resign over his role in the internal crisis caused by the Sept. 26 disappearance of 43 students in Iguala, a city in the southern state of Guerrero.
Former Iguala Mayor Jose Luis Abarca, who allegedly ordered municipal police to hand the students over to the Guerreros Unidos drug cartel, was a PRD member.
The party’s leadership must “restore the organization’s credibility” so the PRD can achieve a “repositioning as a real political option with character and national reach, the only way to be useful to the country,” Cardenas said.
Cuauhtemoc Cardenas is the son of President Lazaro Cardenas, who governed Mexico from 1934 to 1940.
He was a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and served as governor of Michoacan state from 1980 to 1986.
Cardenas organized the PRI’s Democratic Current in 1987 and was the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Front, a party formed by dozens of organizations, in 1988.
Cardenas founded the PRD in May 1989, following his loss in the disputed 1988 presidential elections, and served as its first chairman.