“Don’t think that it is a lot of science to drill an oil well, because it is like drilling a water well, only the difference is that in the water well the depth is 25, 30 meters and in the oil well it is 3 thousand to 5 a thousand meters deep, and the engineers, the technicians, the Mexican oil workers know how to do that very well, for a long time”. These words were said by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on August 9, 2013 during a press conference that he granted at the end of the swearing-in assembly of the Morena delegation committee, in Coyoacán. They are included in Communiqué b13-244 of that date, under the title “AMLO advises that the presentation of the energy reform be postponed ‘forever'”, which can be read at https://lopezobrador.org.mx/2013/08/ 09/lopez-obrador-advises-a-pena-that-you-postpone-for-ever-the-presentation-of-the-energy-reform-because-it-is-about-the-robbery-of-the-century.
The then-leader of Morena apparently liked what he said that day because three days later, on August 12, in a video that he uploaded to social networks, he repeated it: “When is so much science required here to extract oil? That has always been done by the technicians, the Mexican oil workers. It is drilling a well, as if you were going to extract water, nothing more than not 30 meters but three thousand, five thousand meters. It has no science. And oil is extracted and through pipelines it goes to the ports. It doesn’t have a lot of science, it doesn’t require a lot of technology.” The video can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mu584-9qL48&t=492s.
What AMLO said 8 and a half years ago surprised me first, then it caused me laughter and finally great concern given that, as a good populist, he was rejecting the importance of the technical and scientific knowledge required to exploit efficiently and effectively hydrocarbon deposits, knowledge that is acquired in the academy and in the field.
I imagined the anger that the country’s oil engineers and technicians would feel after being compared to those who drill water wells without any academic preparation.
Since then it has become clear to me what the president has said and shown over time: that above a person’s knowledge and skills, there is the loyalty that he professes.
That is why he appointed an agricultural engineer as director of Pemex and now, to take charge of the construction of the Mayan Train, a railway of just over 1,500 kilometers, Javier May, who only studied up to high school and lacks the knowledge and experience necessary to successfully perform your new responsibility.
None of that matters, as Secretary of the Interior Adán Augusto López said a few days ago: “You don’t need to be a railway engineer to coordinate construction and design work; what is needed is that there is the capacity and that one works honestly…”.
Poor Mexico, after being governed by corrupt technocrats with doctorates, is now in the hands of unprepared people who are also corrupt for accepting responsibilities for which they are not trained.
Aren’t there morenistas who, in addition to being loyal and honest, are also well prepared?
Facebook: Eduardo J Ruiz-Healy
Journalist and producer
Opinionist, columnist, lecturer, media trainer, 35 years of experience in the media, micro-entrepreneur.