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Renán Barrera administration turns Yaxché into a new ‘ghost town’ of Mérida 

- September 10, 2023

Yaxché Casares, one of the comisarias located north of Mérida, is one step away from being a ghost town: it barely has 106 inhabitants and about 20 houses make up the “center” of the population. 

Doña Lidia Sulub Trejo, who manages the only grocery store in the place, pointed out that apart from the potholes, nothing happens there, except for a truck that takes them to the center of the capital every 45 minutes. 

They live as if they were forgotten by the authorities, those of the Mérida City Council, under whose jurisdiction, they are supposed to be. In fact, it is one of the rural towns in the capital that are abandoned by Mayor Renán Barrera. 

Adults have to work in the city and the few farmers look for alternatives such as planting pumpkins, corn and apiary production. “My husband (Alfonso Uc) was born here and works in his apiary.” 

The young people, after returning from work or school—because in Yaxché Casares there is only one classroom of the Conafe system (National Council for Educational Development)—go out to the field to play soccer or volleyball or simply to watch the little that happens in the community. 

Sulub Trejo has been working at the little town store for 25 years, but the land where the business operates belongs to the City Council. “I have asked the Mayor (Renán Barrera) to give me this little piece of land to continue with sales, but he has not done so.” 

At the end of the 80s, when Hurricane Gilberto hit (1988), Yaxché was better organized: women ran the business and sold very well, but little by little people emigrated. Today, Doña Lidia pokes her head out to look at the street and it looks like a ghost town. Many people have gone to live elsewhere. She even doubts the registration of 106 inhabitants. “Maybe it won’t even come to that.” 

The urban bus does not even stop, it makes a “U” turn along the only street and returns to the city, in an approximate time of 45 minutes. Nobody goes up, nobody goes down. Fortunately, said Doña Lidia, there is little alcoholism in this place, for the same reason that the few inhabitants are busy. 

Only in the distance can you hear some laughter and screams from children taking classes in the small Conafe classroom. 

They recently repaved the main street, but in the background, some road branches are old, with potholes. Two cars passed through the “center” to go towards Mérida and the silence returned… the silence of an almost ghostly town. 

  Source: Por Esto 

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