ICE Unions March On Legislative Assembly

September 30, 2005

HUNDREDS of workers from the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE), along with their supporters, marched on the Legislative Assembly Monday to protest the Central American Free-Trade Agreement with the United States (CAFTA) and the opening of the telecommunications industry – currently monopolized by the state-run ICE – that is required under the agreement.The protest also criticized the dissolution of the mixed commission that was studying a bill to strengthen ICE in order to face the increased competition that CAFTA would bring if ratified.Beginning at 10 a.m. in Sabana Park in western San José, ICE workers from the various unions that compose the Internal Workers Front (FIT) marched through the city sporting the yellow T-shirts and umbrellas that are ubiquitous in their marches. Upon reaching the assembly buildings, union leaders mounted a tall platform on the back of a flatbed truck loaded with speakers and rallied the workers against CAFTA.Ricardo Seguro, head of FIT, told the newswire ACAN-EFE, “We have mobilized an important number of workers who are conscious of what CAFTA means for ICE.”Legislator Edwin Patterson, of the Citizen Action Party (PAC), walked among the protesters.“I came to support the people and to listen to the various sectors,” he told The Tico Times, adding that if a society doesn’t give its people an opportunity to be heard, it is fair that they protest.The law to strengthen ICE is required in the text of CAFTA for the free-trade agreement to take effect.The protesters delivered a letter to Legislative Assembly President Gerardo González, of the Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC), in which they asked for the return of the mixed commission and the ICE law it was studying, because some legislators are drafting a new law that would not adequately fortify ICE, union members told ACAN-EFE.The march followed on the heels of a demonstration Sept. 20, which coincided with a press conference at which President Abel Pacheco said the time is approaching for him to submit CAFTA to the assembly (TT, Sept. 23).

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

A pilgrimage for a saint: El Salvador mourns
Central America
578 views
Central America
578 views

A pilgrimage for a saint: El Salvador mourns

AFP - March 25, 2019

Hundreds of Salvadorans paid tribute this weekend to their first saint, San Salvador Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero, murdered 39 years…

News
381 views

The Tico Times Weekly Digest: March 25, 2019

Alexander Villegas - March 25, 2019

An indigenous land rights leader was murdered in his home, four cases of measles detected in Costa Rica and La…

Costa Rica Treatment Center tackles addiction differently
Costa Rica
784 views
Costa Rica
784 views

Costa Rica Treatment Center tackles addiction differently

The Tico Times - March 25, 2019

Costa Rica Treatment Center tackles addiction differently. While most drug and alcohol rehab centers shelter their clients from external stimuli,…