Analyzing Demands of Colombia Protestors

Public property is a matter of convenience and must be discussed in each case, which is done in Congress

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The promoters of the strike have representation in Congress; nothing prevents them from introducing a bill to propel their objectives (Efe)

My position on the demands of strikers in Colombia.

Public property is a matter of convenience and must be discussed in each case, which is done in Congress.

I present my position on the 13 demands made by the promoters of the strike in Colombia. The demands are of three types: (i) purely trade union demands, (ii) clearly political objectives, and (iii) general approaches that concern broad sectors of society that are not necessarily represented by the political organizations and movements linked to the strike.

  1. Withdraw the tax reform bill. Unacceptable. It is within the jurisdiction of the government to present tax reform projects, and it is up to Congress to approve or reject them. To accept this is to suppress representative democracy and replace it with the imposition of a mob that acts outside the law by trying to impose its aspirations and political objectives by force.
  2. Repeal the financial holding company with which the Grupo Empresarial Bicentenario was created. Unacceptable. The holding company was created by decree 2111 of 2019 in use of the powers conferred to the Executive by law 1955 of 2019. To accept this is to suppress representative democracy and replace it with the imposition of a mob that acts outside the law by trying to impose its aspirations and political objectives by force.
  3. Repeal Ministry of Labour Circular 049 on enhanced job stability. This circular refers to the procedure to be followed for the dismissal of persons in a situation of disability. It is entirely negotiable and may be amended if it is not per labor legislation.
  4. Dissolve the Esmad and purge the Police force. Unacceptable.
  5. Do not present the pension reform. Inconvenient to postpone the pension reform that the country needs. Its content is negotiable with all the social actors involved, not only with the Strike Committee.
  6. Do not present labor reform and repeal articles 193, 198, 240, and 242 of the National Development Plan. Labour reform is necessary. Its content is negotiable with all the social actors involved, not only with the Strike Committee.
  7. Do not privatize or dispose of public assets. Unacceptable as an absolute principle. Public property is a matter of convenience and must be discussed in each case, which is done in Congress
  8. Compliance with previous agreements with different sectors involved in unemployment. The agreements must be complied with if they are compatible with the fiscal possibilities of the nation. If not, they must be renegotiated.
  9. Process with agrarian dignity the primary needs of the Colombian countryside. This can be discussed without the imposition of suppression of FTAs.
  10. Comply with and implement, hand in hand with Defendamos la Paz (We Defend Peace), the peace agreements signed in Havana. The government is complying with those agreements and must continue to do so, but it does not have to answer to an NGO made up of international left-wing activists.
  11. Process bills related to the anti-corruption law as soon as possible. Congress rejected the anti-corruption proposals. The Executive can present them again.
  12. Repeal article 313 of the National Development Plan. The promoters of the strike have representation in Congress; nothing prevents them from introducing a bill to repeal this article and those considered in point 6.
  13. Define environmental policies for the protection of moors and the environment. This definition must be made with the participation of all the actors involved, not only with the Strike Committee.
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