Great news from Mexico where trade unions are under constant attack – the Mexican Supreme Court has voted to restore legal recognition to Napoleon Gomez, General Secretary of the National Union of Mine, Metal and Steelworkers (known as Los Mineros).
The Court’s Second Chamber ruled that the Mexican Labour Secretary had acted illegally when he withdrew legal recognition from the union leader in 2008.
“This is a major victory for Los Mineros and all Mexican workers,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard.
Last week, another Mexican court threw out the last criminal charge against Gomez, who has lived in exile in Canada with USW support since 2006.
“Today’s decision should sound the death knell for the Mexican government’s vicious and illegal persecution of Napoleon Gomez and Los Mineros,” Gerard said.
Fernando Lopes, Assistant General Secretary and Jorge Almeida, Regional Secretary of the International Metalworkers Federation werr present when the court announced its ruling, as were Lorraine Clewer of the AFL-CIO, Ben Davis of the USW and doctors Carlos del Buen and Oscar Alzaga.
Los Mineros appointed Napoleón Gómez as general secretary in May 2008, but the Ministry of Labour refused to recognise the validity of his election, alleging violations of union rules. Gómez went into exile in Canada and the National Prosecutor’s Office requested the federal courts to issue a warrant for his arrest on suspicion of the criminal use of illegally obtained funds of $55 million. The final arrest warrant outstanding for the miners’ leader was cancelled at the end of April this year.
A great result and a defeat for the right wing Mexican government and employers who have persecuted Napoleon since his election.