On August 19th, 2017, the Movement in Defense of Life and Territory (MOVEDITE in its Spanish acronym) of Chiapas issued a statement from the community of Santa Cruz in Sitala, where they strongly denounce, “political groups disguised as civil associations or aid foundations that use people and abuse their poverty. Where they condition the most basic aid for votes and thus corrupt those who they say they support.”
They further reproached “the political propaganda on posters, painted walls and calendars that promote candidates outside the stipulated time. Without respecting the laws and norms, it is obvious that what really matters to the parties is the triumph of their groups and not the good of the people.”
They also added that they reject “people who are visiting communities offering support and wanting to buy community leaders. It confirms that the parties have not changed and will not change the way they do things.”
They recalled through the communiqué that it is illegal for the parties to advance the campaign using, for example, the creation of foundations.
They urged all who receive this word to build autonomy and denounce lies from the path of their traditions seeking a fairer and more dignified life, where everybody has a place.
Their denunciation is headed by a statement by Bishop Felipe Arizmendi, Bishop of the Diocese of San Cristobal de Las Casas in which he states, “The parties split, divide and confront the communities. Legislators should analyze the feasibility and suitability of another electoral system: […] by traditions and customs. Analyze this path and advance democracy, if it really interests them that the people be the ones who build their history.”
It is worth mentioning that MOVEDITE is made up of Tseltal, tsotsil, ch’ol and mestizo men and women with presence in 11 parishes of 12 municipalities and one ejido of Chiapas, members of the Believing People of the Diocese of San Cristobal de las Casas.
For more information in Spanish:
Pronunciamiento de MOVEDITE ante las campañas políticas anticipadas. (20 de agosto de 2017)
For more information from SIPAZ:
Chiapas: El pueblo Zoque se está movilizando contra de los mega-proyectos en Chiapas. (29 de junio de 2017)