Thousands of workers demand an end to political persecution

Posted on May 2, 2011

COFADEH at the May 1st march

COFADEH expressed its repudiation of the sale of the country into pieces

Thousands of Hondurans took to the streets on May Day to demand an end to political persecution, respect for human rights, the repeal of hour labor and the safe return of President Manuel Zelaya Rosales and creation of a National Constituent Assembly, among other points.

The streets were flooded with people belonging to unions, employers’ associations, women, students, teachers, and organized LGBT groups in buses from different neighborhoods, carrying their demands.

With music and theatre, they demanded the regime to cease all political persecution against teachers, peasants and trade unionists.

To emulate the organized violence that is practiced by the Porfirio Lobo Sosa regime, several young people were chained and hit with a baton by a “police officer” who shouted epithets against their “victims”.

The condemnation of work by the hour, or libras, was reflected in placards carried by different organizations.

The march was attended by activists from the School of the Americas Watch center, who are in the country in solidarity with groups who suffer serious human rights violations, including peasants from Zacate Grande and Aguán.

This year hondurans face an acute economic crisis, worsened by the coup, in which 53 percent of the population under 35 years are unemployed.

More than half of the economically active population lost the right to decent employment and those who have employment can barely make ends meet. According to the Committee of Relatives of Detained and Disappeared in Honduras, COFADEH, economic indicators fell due to the political violence used against the citizens of the State.

Inflation has prevented three-quarters of the population their right to decent food.

“The new laws adopted by those who see themselves on top through violence, presidential candidates obedient to factic powers, have destroyed the gains of the working class,” says COFADEH. It created the perverse form of employment by the hour, rather than promote new employment with dignity, respect for collective agreements and statutes.

The human rights organization criticized the false promise of 550 thousand new jobs by the hour, when in six months the private sector has only created 88.

COFADEH repudiated what they see as the sale of the country into pieces, the forced exile of the population who continue to migrate despite the continued threats by criminals, in order to face life and death through an economic exodus, while a rich nation is assaulted by a gang of outlaws.

“After nearly two years of that brutal act of barbarism, we are still in the streets, the people will not surrender. They cannot take our joy or dignity, ” says the document.

The mobilization came to Central Park in the capital where organizations and labor unions denounced the regime’s atrocities in a joint statement.

While the teacher unions called their bases to keep fighting despite the violence against them, and called for information meetings starting this Wednesday.