Latin America & Caribbean

Mexico election: What matters most to voters

Mexicans go to the polls on 1 July to elect a new president for a six-year term. BBC Mundo spoke to a selection of people in different parts of the country to ask what matters most to them:

Paulina Belem Benitez, engineering student from Monterrey

First we heard about rich children being kidnapped, then we heard stories about going to a party and drug cartel hit-men turning up.

I left (Monterrey) in 2010. I took the decision because I was working in a bar and I was worried gunmen might start going there.

I moved to the state of Queretaro because my family and friends are here and I can study. In Monterrey I wasn't happy, I couldn't enjoy myself nor go out.

I haven't heard concrete proposals from any of the candidates. They only make generalisations, not clear ideas which will improve the security situation for everyone.

Maximo Munoz de la Cruz, indigenous leader in Wirikuta territory, San Luis Potosi

For months, the Huichol indigenous group...has opposed plans for mining in an area (Wirikuta) they consider sacred.

The First Majestic (mining) company said no sacred area would be affected, but for indigenous people in the region the Wirikuta territory is part of a much wider conflict between the law, traditional territories of the Indians and economic exploitation.

What is most important to me is that the next government...attends to problems like Wirikuta.

I want them to understand that we're not against economic development in the region nor against mining companies.

But we want them to respect the sacred lands, to respect the rights of the indigenous peoples and, above all, consult us about whatever project or public policy that concerns us.

David Alfaro, founder of a web design company, Guadalajara

Guadalajara is one of Latin America's most important technological hubs.

The candidates lack a proper understanding of this industry and, above all, what it would mean for the country if we could take it to the next level.

I haven't heard them speak directly about how they intend to help the technology industry.

It is very difficult to get credit to develop the software industry.

Given the nature of our business, the banks and the government don't give us credit. We need to see real continuity and depth in government projects to move this forward.

Onan Vazquez, gay rights activist, Puebla

Puebla is regarded as one of the most conservative states in Mexico and has seen a rise in recent months in attacks against the LGBT community.

In Mexico, people of different sexual orientation face stigma, discrimination, violence and even murder.

And we have seen that human rights are not a fundamental issue for the political parties here.

We are asking for a state law to prevent discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation, and then they consider the idea of equal marriage rights, as already exists in Mexico City

Ruperto Segura, 60, retired coal miner, Coahuila

I have seen many accidents and helped in rescues after mine collapses.

These days there is modern technology which means that, if there is the political will on behalf of the owners and the authorities, it's possible to work with greater security.

But there are still many coal seams, some of them illegal, where they are playing with the lives of the young men working in them.

The candidates don't seem to worry particularly about us.

They don't seem to understand that we have very particular needs and requirements in our industry.

Cynthia Rivera Martinez, 23, from Mexico City, domestic abuse victim

It took a long time since the violence started at home before I looked for help and psychological support.

It was nearly five months of abuse, during which I almost lost the sight in my right eye because of the beatings.

Those who work for the state institutions are very intolerant, they don't respect you.

It's disgraceful the way the victims are treated, not just by the abuser but also by the authorities.

More attention is needed from the authorities towards the abused women and to carry out their investigations properly.

Luz Maria Gonzalez, 18, Guatemalan migrant

Left Guatemala with her husband, one-year-old son and other relatives, travelling north on freight trains and buses heading for the US. Luz Maria cannot vote in Mexico but had a message for the next president.

I would say they need to put themselves in our place. We understand that they are the authorities but that doesn't give them the right to mistreat people.

My husband and I took the decision to travel to the United States because we are trying to find a better future for our children, so they don't fall into crime.

We want our children to have what we weren't able to.

Luz Maria was interviewed in an immigrants' hostel in the state of Coahuila.

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