Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns of further sanctions against Russia

    Read more

  • EU leaders meet in Brussels to seek a response to Russia

    Read more

  • IMF stands behind Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Experimental Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • France shines in IMF list of world’s promising economists

    Read more

  • Chelsea’s Torres set for AC Milan switch

    Read more

  • First case of Ebola confirmed in Senegal

    Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' against IS militants in Syria

    Read more

  • Netflix to woo French with ‘House of Cards’ set in Marseille

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

  • Syrian refugees surpass 3 million, UN says

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

Americas

Notebook: Mexicans unveil the mask

Text by Battiste FENWICK

Latest update : 2009-05-06

The swine flu crisis has stabilised these past few days in Mexico City. Many people have stopped wearing their masks. The time may have come to evaluate the government's job in its handling of the crisis.

The health crisis has stabilised these past few days in Mexico City. Many people have stopped wearing their masks. Relieved, they are finally able to take a breath of fresh air. Now, as life seems to be slowly coming back to normal, it's time to evaluate the government's job in its handling of the crisis. Were the preventive measures imposed by the Mexican federal government during the state of alert justified?

Rafael Segura confesses he never really liked President Felipe Calderon's government in the first place. According to Rafael, the government's miscalculation of the danger of the H1N1 virus was one error too many; there was no need to take such drastic measures. He doesn't hesitate to point his finger at the one he calls "the incompetent". "I am furious at the president," Segura says. "He lied to his people about the gravity of the flu."


Although somewhat more moderate, Maricarmen's views are similar: the federal government did not do a good job handling the H1N1 crisis. "For about twenty deaths and a few hundred sick people, the government decided to paralyze the entire country. There are going to be serious economic consequences. That is why I think the sanitary measures the government imposed were way over the top."



Luci Martinez (main picture) sells cigarettes and candy on a street corner. For more than thirty years, she has been selling her goods in front of the Durango Hospital. She makes most of her money from what the hospital staff buys from her. Her business has severely suffered this past week. She estimates that she lost more than half of the money she should have made. However, Luci is optimistic about the future of her business, as well as for the future of other Mexicans. As for her appreciation of the government's handling of the crisis, Luci has a unique point of view. "The problem is not with the government but with the people. The virus spread because people lack good hygiene. I am in contact with people all the time, and let me tell you: they are filthy! That's what needs to change!"


Luis Roberto has just dropped his daughter off at the hospital. Fortunately, the ear infection she contracted has nothing to do with the H1N1 virus. Roberto understands and approves of the government's handling of the crisis. "Health should come first. Always. The government was right to impose such drastic measures, regardless of the economic backlash. Our priority is to get rid of this virus, once and for all, whether it takes us a week or a year!"

 

Date created : 2009-05-06

COMMENT(S)