By Oscar Montero, El Paisa
The coronavirus is not so much a threat to the economy and corporate profits, but to human life on the planet. In Colombia, President Duque is more concerned with saving banks than saving lives. It is the most absurd investment. That is the real virus to be defeated.
This government is an expert in empty words and media solutions. It orders quarantine for everyone, which is fine, especially for people who have resources and go to Carulla and buy everything to face the crisis; but it is wrong, very wrong to lock up the poor who have nothing to eat. It is understandable that they have to go out to seek the means of subsistence. The belly does not wait. At the rate we’re going, the poor will not be killed by Covid-19, but by hunger.
Those sheltered government officials and the president himself should assist people living in misery by making food available to them for the duration of the quarantine. And not just that: the state must guarantee them free medicines, drinking water, gas, electricity and even a basic monthly income that allows them to survive until they find employment.
Arturo Calle and other businessmen who project themselves as having more social sensitivity in this emergency sent their employees home, guaranteeing their wages. They get applause. But the “tied up” and stingy businessmen who are forcing their workers to show up at their jobs should be penalized.
Duque doesn’t care about the things he should be concerned about. The only thing that worries him is that Sarmiento Angulo’s multimillion-dollar profits not be reduced. He must be wishing that the coronavirus will hit people so that they will never speak again of his scandalous ties and those of Uribe with the mafia drug trafficker Ñeñe Hernández, the Ñeñevirus policy that helped him win the presidency. May we never forget this, and may it not be erased from our memory, that the Duque government is the government of corruption, impunity and the economic packages that rob the poorest to make the richest richer. So we must continue to protest.
This government has shown no shred of solidarity with the neediest people.
Today the world needs solidarity, but the capitalist powers pretend not to notice. In this world crisis, the solidarity of Cuba has emerged, the island inhumanely blockaded by the Donald Trump government. In any part of the world where solidarity with suffering peoples is needed, Cuban doctors, their women and men in white, go to fight disease. To the people of Fidel and Martí we must return love with love. Let us demand an end to the criminal blockade by the current U.S. government against Cuba.
We Colombians must appreciate these sincere gestures of brotherhood, such as that of Russia which has sent doctors and medicines to support Italy, hit hard by the deadly virus.
Solidarity, Che said, is the tenderness of the peoples. On behalf of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC-EP), Second Marquetalia, I call for solidarity at this time of pandemic, of pain and suffering. Together we have to save life on earth.
From the rebel mountains of Colombia
March 26, 2020