The torrential rains that fell on Bogotá, cooled a new day of protests by unions and social organizations in rejection of the economic and social policy the Government of President Iván Duque, as well as the violence that plagues some regions of Colombia.
Although thousands of people took to the streets of the different cities of the country, the demonstrations They were not as crowded as those in recent months and the downpours, which even caused flooding in some areas of Bogotá, caused the concentrations to dissolve after noon
Music and protests
The day was called two days before the first anniversary of the start of the demonstrations that lasted for several weeks between November and December last year in rejection of the government de Duque, who is accused of not negotiating with social organizations “the list of requests.”
In the Colombian capital, members of the Central Unitaria de Trabajadores (CUT) came out with drums and led a drumming that set the march of the crowd to the Plaza de Bolívar, the center of Colombian power, where the different groups of protesters were expected to arrive.
There were also Andean music groups that walked with the protesters, as well as former FARC combatants who joined the protest to reject the violence that has claimed the lives of 241 of them since the peace agreement was signed in November 2016.
In other cities such as Medellín, Cali, Barranquilla, and Bucaramanga, small groups met and protested without major news. The leaders of the National Unemployment Committee, of which they are part social and union organizations, demand that the Government immediately negotiate the emergency document raised in the mobilizations of November 2019.
The workers’ centrals reject Duque’s economic and social policy because they consider that it goes against the workers and affects the employment stability by allowing hiring by hours, as well as allegedly ignoring rights such as subsidies for education, food and affiliations to entities for recreation, among others.
They also ask for the violent actions to stop, murders of social leaders and the restriction of social protest, and they reject the police brutality that left 13 dead in Bogotá and Soacha, a municipality near the Colombian capital, last September.
Health system reforms
Another motivation is the measures adopted by the Government before the COVID-19 pandemicThey consider that the economic and social conditions of Colombian workers have deteriorated.
The protest was joined by groups of workers from the sector of health, who reject the health reform bill being processed by Congress. According to the Government, this project seeks to guarantee the fundamental right to health, for which the essential functions of the system will be redefined.
The idea is to integrate public health, the protection of risks and the provision of services that materialize the right to health, as well as retaking the real role of the insurer.
Turning health into business
“The National Government and the Congress of the Republic want to approve a bill to deepen the health business model, of Law 100, which broke down, was unsuccessful and failed to face the pandemic, “said Carolina Corcho, vice president of the Colombian Medical Federation.
Law 100 of 1993 created the system of comprehensive social security but it practically privatized it by transferring health care services to Healthcare Providers (EPS). That is why the workers in the sector brought cardboard coffins with messages such as “No more hospital closings” or “No more bill 010”, in reference to the reform initiative being processed by Congress.
After noon, when the protesters were finishing gathering in the Bolivar plaza, the protest was dissolved by a storm that fell on Bogotá, which even caused flooding in some of the main avenues of the city and even caused the fall of a pole in the center of the Colombian capital.