By: Patricia Mayorga
MEXICO CITY (apro)
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s request for an apology from Spain because of colonization, is a simulation, “what they have to do is to stop dispossessing communities of their land,” the National Indigenous Congress (CNI) spokeswoman, María de Jesús Patricio Martínez, pointed out.
On her visit through Chihuahua, the former aspirant to the presidency of the Republic insisted that the federal government deceives the citizens because it continues the dispossession and displacement of ethnicities in order to take possession of their territory.
The Purépecha Francisco Reyes, who is also a member of the CNI, warned that in the government of López Obrador the situation for indigenous peoples could get worse because he imposes measures and actions with the justification that has the support of 30 million people that voted for his national project, according to what the local Chihuahua publication Raíchali published.
Both agree that the promotion of megaprojects is accompanied by the social decomposition of the communities, con the pretext of development because it’s about a business in which “there’s no limit (…) they’re just screwing over the peoples.”
Marichuy Patricio Martínez said that they are not going to stop fighting so that the customs of the peoples prevail and achieve an organization from below against the destructive actions of the megaprojects.
The indigenous leader met with representatives of the mountain communities of Chihuahua, to listen to what has happened in the region since the start of the new federal government.
“It’s about a tour to see how they are resisting and to know what they think about the new government,” she said upon arriving in the northern state.
María de Jesús Patricio expressed her concern about the works announced, like the construction of the Maya Train (Tren Maya) in the country’s south, which they imposed “with a rigged consultation,” orchestrated by big capitalists that are the ones who dictate the direction of things, publishes the Chihuahua website.
The CNI spokeswoman said that the change of regime would not come because that doesn’t depend on only one person, but rather on everyone. And, in the case of the indigenous communities, many have maintained their customs with their governors, form of organization, fiestas, traditions and a cared-for territory that they have known how to maintain.
“We are justly fighting for that, for the respect of life on earth,” the added.
In the specific case of Chihuahua, she referred to the huge problem clandestine logging in various zones of the state, like in the municipality of Bocoyna, in which the four wheels of capitalism against the indigenous communities are show: exploitation, repression, dispossession and contempt.
She criticized that, in that case, the action of the authority had been contrary to the request of the residents, such as in the community of Bawinocachi, Bocoyna, in which the Federal Prosecutor for Environmental Protection (Profepa) placed responsibility on its residents for the clandestine logging that, since about a year ago, started killing off their forest.
In the settlement agreement dated January 15, 2019, the federal agency notified them that it had opened an administrative process against them for alleged omissions they could incur by permitting deforestation, Raíchali published.
“If they finish off the forest they are going to all of us,” María de Jesús Patricio insisted and emphasized the need to organize from below so that the people govern and also to prevent the destruction of the forest and the natural resources by the corporations or governments that want to impose businesses.
Patricio Martínez reiterated that there are many communities that maintain their customs and their form of organization.
Originally Published in Spanish by Proceso
Tuesday, March 26, 2019
Re-Published with English interpretation by the Chiapas Support Committee