Paralyzed management: Manzur processes 90% fewer files than last year
Despite the fragile internal truce, the Government does not react and management is still plagued by a general paralysis. One piece of information serves to confirm the diagnosis: only approximately 30 files per month pass through the Chief of Staff. That represents 10 percent of the work – resolutions, administrative decisions, items, among other topics – that passed through the desk of John Manzur and his second, Jorge Neme, when they took control of the administration instead of Santiago Cafiero, in September.
The figure, confirmed by official sources to THE NATION, It is the verification of the moment that the national government is passing, the administration is practically immobilized. Worn out and far from the day-to-day of the cabinet, Manzur is focused on maintaining the relationship with the governors.
If it is compared with the times of the volume of work during the hardest stage of the pandemic – with the implementation of the IFE and the ATP program, for example, the difference is abysmal: the Foreign Minister came to stamp his signature on 1,500 files per month.
“There is a low quality of management”, recognized one of the officials closest to the President, a member of the group that seeks a reaction from Alberto Fernández, among which are Cafiero, Agustín Rossi, Aníbal Fernández, Vilma Ibarra and Julio Vitobello.
Traversed by the economic crisis, which translated into an overheating of social conflicts, the coordinating minister completely abandoned the daily control board that he had announced he was going to start up as soon as he landed as chief of staff, times in which he presented himself as a management computer and a lightning rod for Fernández. He today he does neither one nor the other.
With Manzur focused on negotiations with the league of governors of the Front of All and his intern with whom he replaced as governor in Tucumán, Osvaldo Jaldo, all eyes fall on his number two, Jorge Nemé. Manzur’s most trusted man, the deputy chief of staff discontinued some of the practices he was carrying out Cecilia Todeca, such as economic cabinet meetings.
In fact, as found THE NATION, Neme today hardly articulates actions with the ministers. The only contact between Manzur and his deputy with the management are the cabinet meetings that the minister heads to coordinate every 15 days, but in which there are practically no significant advances. Even Manzur decided to suspend the meeting that was scheduled for this week. There was no communication about it. Not even a tweet, his favorite communication platform.
“Everything is stuck, nobody does what they have to do. Nobody decides anything. It’s a swap”, lamented a minister.
Some officials, maliciously, slipped that it is due to Neme’s lack of time, who spends a lot of time traveling, especially in two destinations: the United States and Mexico. They also mentioned that she occupies part of his agenda and interest in Arsat, the state telecommunications company that has the massista Matias Tombolini as president.
Almost unrelated to Alberto Fernández -the door that joins the offices of the President and Manzur has been closed for weeks-, the coordinating minister has revived in recent months his relationship with the vice president Cristina Kirchner. “Speak often with her,” trusted official sources. He also continues with his meetings with governors, businessmen and mayors. He tells everyone the same thing: “He is worried about the future of the Government,” summed up several of his interlocutors.
In this scenario, the coordinating minister seeks not to be left out of the construction of the league of governors, who today have Jorge Captainich (Chaco) and Axel Kicillo (Buenos Aires) as main promoters. According to what they trusted near Manzur, the man from Tucuman aspires to lead that space. He puts a large part of his efforts into that, except from Friday to Sunday, days he spends in his province.
The relationship between the head of state and Manzur is good, but not one of trust. The right hand of the President was, is and will be Cafiero. That never changed and it was clearly seen in the last weeks of maximum tension that the president went through in his relationship with Cristina Kirchner. While the Tucuman waited in a room for the definition of his future, the only one with unrestricted access to Fernández’s office was the Foreign Minister.
As a counterpart and while in the Cabinet Headquarters they roam, the ministers with territory, such as Gabriel Katopodis (Public Works), John Zabaleta (Social Development) and Jorge Ferraresi (Habitat) accelerated the executions of their areas. For example, Katopodis launched a plan with the 120 most important large structural works. Ferraresi, meanwhile, has already handed over 50,000 homes – there are another 124,000 under construction – and on Wednesday, together with the President, he will present the 60,000 credit, in Isla Maciel.
The momentum that Manzur brought liquefied quickly. The inmate unleashed within the Frente de Todos engulfed the imprint she wanted to put on the management. no one talks about it anymore “control panel” which he implemented a month after taking office to ensure progress in the management of each of the 20 ministries under his charge.
Not meeting the objectives, as he let it be known in those glory days as soon as he arrived at the national cabinet, was going to have consequences. None of that happened. His landing in Balcarce 50 after the electoral earthquake of the PASO, much celebrated by the ministers, today became a generalized lament. The ministers who support him are counted with one hand. His only strength lies in his radius of action with the governors, especially those from the north.