The fourth day of strike in Santa Cruzthe largest region and economic engine of boliviaagainst the suspension of the population census began this Tuesday with clashes between groups of people who complied with the pressure measure and others who tried to unblock the roads with violence.
LOOK: This is known about the indefinite civic strike in Bolivia: measures, dialogues and what is known from Santa Cruz
The main problems were reported on Santos Dumont Avenue and in the populous Plan 3,000 area, the latter considered one of the official strongholds in the Santa Cruz capital, where the groups seeking to unblock carried sticks and detonating firecrackers against those who had closed the streets since early.
The unblocking groups moved in vehicles and in some places they had police help to remove the rubble and other objects used to block the way.
The Police fired tear gas to dispel the opposing sectors in Plan 3,000.
After the scuffle, those mobilized against the postponement of the census blocked again and the others withdrew to the Los Lotes neighborhood, from where they usually mobilize against the citizen strike.
On this day, the markets and supermarkets were filled with people looking for food and other items, after the organizers of the strike indicated that these centers would be allowed to operate during the morning so that the population can stock up and then continue with pressure measurements.
Speaking to EFE, Gabriela Crespo, a citizen who went to a market to make purchases, said that “we must support” the strike “because good is for everyone,” although she also considered it important to take into account the people who survive. with your daily work.
“The census is for everyone, for all of Bolivia. That there be a dialogue, an understanding and that it be the best for all of Bolivia”, said Crespo.
Santa Cruz leads the demands for the census to be carried out in 2023 and its results to be applied in 2025, when the presidential elections are expected to be held.
A new allocation of economic resources for regions and municipalities depends on the data from this national survey, and also on the representation quotas in Parliament.
Initially, the census was to be carried out in November of this year, however, the Luis Arce government postponed it until 2024, arguing technical problems and the need to “depoliticize” the process.
The Government summoned the civic leaders of Santa Cruz to dialogue last Saturday, although the talks did not prosper and the indefinite citizen strike continues.
The national Executive proposed that the census be carried out in April 2024 and that in six months, with the issuance of the preliminary results, a new distribution of resources for the regions of the country will begin, while the leaders of Santa Cruz insist that the consultation take place in 2023.
Although both parties have been open to dialogue, this process has not been resumed, even the civic sectors of Santa Cruz requested the mediation of the Catholic Church.
The ruling party considers that the protests in Santa Cruz are “coup adventures” as, according to the authorities, occurred in 2019, when Evo Morales resigned from the Presidency claiming to be the victim of a “coup d’état”, amid complaints of an alleged electoral fraud in his favor in the failed general elections of that year.
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