Chiapas: Intimidation and polluting project in the municipality of Tila are denounced

Placas del PUDEE en Jolnixtie @ SIPAZ

Placas del PUDEE en Jolnixtie @ SIPAZ

On 24 June, there was released a public communiqué written by representatives of the organization Kichán Kichañob regarding the high electricity-prices that the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) charges, as well as the CFE’s threats to cut off services.  For their part, representatives of the organization People United in Defense of Electricity (PUDEE) and ejidal authorities of the community Jolnixtie Section 1 warn in a communiqué released on 30 June about a drain-and-capture project for polluted water, one of the results of which would be that other waters in the area could be rendered no longer fit for human consumption.

According to the communiqué released by Kichán Kichañob’s representatives, the CFE is charging prices that do not correspond to consumption-levels on the part of the populaces of the communities of Limar, Nuevo Limar, Usipá, Cruz Palenque, and Jol-Ako, all of which find themselves in the zone below Tila.  The communiqué states that the CFE “intimidates us if we don’t pay” by means of use of the police and threatening mass electricity-cuts.  The representatives demand respect for their “right to resist by not paying these high prices.”

In Jolnixtie section 1, another community in the zone below Tila, representatives of PUDEE and ejidal authorities have denounced the proposed construction-project of an open-air drainage system in the neighboring community of Libertad Jolnixtie section 2 that would pollute the stream that passes through Jolnixtie section 1, “affecting kilometers of rivers, streams, springs, and aquifers, polluting the environment, and affecting the diverse plant and animal species that already threatened with extinction.  At the same time, we will [if the project proceeds] stop using our waters to prepare food, wash clothes, and bathe ourselves.  This development would affect more than a thousand families as well as pre-schools and primary schools.”  They explain that this project, promoted by the mayor of Tila, Limber Gutiérrez Gómez, is supported by the ejidal authorities of Libertad Jolnixtie section 2, along with people who identify themselves as part of the paramilitary group “Peace and Justice,” which is tied to the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the Party of Democratic Revolution (PRD), and Green-Ecologist Party (PVEM).  “This construction will affect a hectare of land cultivated by Mr. Francisco García Hernández, who was approached by paramilitary groups that uprooted fruit- and wood-trees that [Hernández] had had planted.  They insulted him and threatened to expel him from the community if he did not cease construction on his land.”  The ejidatarios have called on the appropriate authorities to cancel the project; they allege that they were never consulted about the project to begin with, in violation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization (ILO).

For more information (in Spanish):

Complete communiqué of representatives of Kichán Kichañob

Complete communiqué of representatives of PUDEE and ejidal authorities from Jolnixtie section 1

Cuarto Poder: CFE intimidations are denounced; Chols “resist”

Cuarto Poder: Drainage system hurts the environment, it is claimed

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