SNAhonesto: the opportunity to fight corruption

Animal Político 05/08/17

Implementing the National Anticorruption System requires relevant, timely, and true information. This is why SNAhonesto was born.

From the bottom to the top

The blog in Opciona aims to explore the way in which corruption in Mexico is built and spread daily, from top to bottom and from the bottom to the top. Combining narrative journalism with informative reports, chronicles, profiles, and opinion articles, it seeks to prove that corruption is based in daily and repeated actions, which serve as the basis to write up laws, build institutions, and implement policies that, logically, are grounded in corrupt relations.

On May 8, 2017, Opciona presented in the Memorial and Tolerance Museum its most recent project: SNAhonesto, a chart that summarizes in a didactic approach the progress of the various Local Systems that make up the National Anticorruption System (SNA for its Spanish acronym). The goal is to provide the institutions that make up the SNA, Civil Society Organizations (CSO), mass media, and society in general with relevant, timely, and true information regarding the progress and delays in the necessary reforms and appointments to implement the SNA satisfactorily throughout Mexico.

The chart has 11 categories where the stages of implementation of each Local Anticorruption System (SLA for its Spanish acronym) are assessed: six for the process of adapting laws and five for the appointments. The rating of each state is the sum of each variable, with questions rating from 0 to 3 the regulatory adaptations and/or procedures established to carry out legal implementation processes, as well as their compliance with the international standards of an Open Parliament. Depending on the points totaled, each variable takes on a corresponding color: green as the highest rating, yellow as the intermediate, and pink as the lowest. Gray means that the corresponding state has not finished the related process.

The following image is a representation of what the chart currently looks like. At first glance, we can see that there are only three states that have implemented the constitutional reform and the legal reform of the Local System. On the other hand, ten states have not completed the constitutional reform, and there is even one state—Veracruz—with a failure grade (pink). Thus also, each state has null or failure grades under the column headed “Situation”, largely because they are all delayed in the process of implementing their own SLAs.

The story behind each space is impossible to know by simply looking at the colors. That is why each row, which represents a state, has an additional space where press releases, communiqués, or any other information can be included to help the user of the chart fully understand what is going on in the SLAs. In this particular aspect, alliances made with other organizations in the states will be crucial, as they will make it possible to gain a better understanding of the political pulse in each state’s context.

The tool aims to be useful on at least three levels. First, as a practical and efficient way of summarizing information, with the aim that public institutions, such as the SNA’s Citizen Participation Committee can take it and use it to survey and communicate the implementation of the Local Systems. Second, as an instrument so SCOs can actively pressure for the proper fulfillment of reforms and appointments. Third, as a space for encounters where the various SCO’s and citizens can become acquainted and carry out joint actions to increase the degree of incidence of civil society.

So far, 19 local and national organizations have joined as allies, and will be helping with the inputs that the SNAhonesto platform will present. They will all be able to fill out the questionnaire on which we based the investigation and the data on the platform, as well as carrying out joint actions with other allies of Opciona.

July 18 is around the corner, the day when the SNA will officially launch! However, the slow progress of SLAs leads us to suspect that they will most likely fail to formally comply with the timing that the General Law of the National Anticorruption System demands. If our suspicions are correct, tools like SNAhonesto will gain double the relevance in the coordination of a proactive civil society that will push for the proper installation of all the parts of the SNA.

This is a chance for us to use all the resources available to make the SNA an institution that will serve people in the fight against corruption. We had better exploit it.


Text translated by the Instituto VIF from the original published by Animal Político.