News Service of the Newspaper En Marcha
PCMLE [Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Ecuador]
Quito, February 21, 2002
This afternoon, February 21, the General Strike of the People of Ecuador continued, with the same character as the first day. Since one of the points was the struggle against corruption and another the fight against the privatization, two events caused the size of today's protest to be somewhat smaller this morning. First was the resignation of the Joint Command of the Armed Forces, involved in various cases of corruption, and second was the decision of the Constitutional Court to maintain its ruling of the unconstitutionality of the privatization of the electric company, which led President Noboa to state that "if the country does not want it we will not privatize it," concluding with attacks and threats against the trade unionists.
During the afternoon hours the strength could be felt with the great magnitude of the marches with torchlight and empty pans. The most important aspect was its unitary character, including the most varied organizations of all the popular sectors and the forces of the left. Those marches testified to the fact that the struggle continues and that the preventive character of these days will be transformed into total paralysis in case the government continues with its privatization measures.
The organizations of the Patriotic Front now calls for new meetings to sum up and plan to advance the rights of the peoples of Ecuador.
We include a report by provinces and other items of interest [not included in the translation]. Thanks.
The National President of the Popular Front, Lic. Luis Villacís Maldonado, called the STRIKE OF THE PEOPLE a condemnation of the government of the Noboa brothers; the demonstrations showed the discontent in the countryside and the cities of all the provinces of the country; also that we have an executive that lacks all support and must rectify procedures.
He stated that THE CALL FOR THE STRIKE showed the support, not only of the organizations of the PATRIOTIC FRONT but of other sectors of the population that joined the various days of protest by blocking highways, marching, taking over the streets and plazas of the country.
Dismissal of the President of the Republic and Officials of the CONAM
Finally he stated that if the President of the Republic insists on trying to sell the electric company ignoring the decision of the Constitutional Court, he could be dismissed together with all the officials of the CONAM, by order of the Political Charter in force.
The Popular Front will insist before the Constitutional Court, together with the other organizations, that this agency must respect the constitution, otherwise a new popular uprising is possible.
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