EconomyFinancialInformal miners join the strike, will come out to...

Informal miners join the strike, will come out to protest on May 13

The National Mining Board demanded the end of the stigmatization against the lawful and legitimate activity of barequeo.

The informal miners of the country, gathered at the National Mining Table, announced that they will join the national strike starting this Thursday, May 13 “as many have been requesting in light of the latest events that have occurred in the mining areas where they live and carry out their activity. ”.

Also read: Antioquia miners ask to sink project on illegal extraction: these are their reasons

The organization issued a statement in which it said it will mobilize peacefully in rejection of government policies that govern them as “subsistence miners who have been absurdly and unfairly stigmatized as illegal miners.”

Within its list of petitions, the Board requested the withdrawal of bill 059 of 2020 on the eradication of the illicit exploitation of minerals and urged the members of the First Committee of the Senate, the President of the Republic and the Minister of Mines and Energy “to make a call for a national dialogue of all the actors involved in this problem.”

He also demanded the end of the stigmatization against the legal and legitimate activity of barequeo, which is that of informal miners, recognized constitutionally and internationally.

Regarding the authority of the sector, he asked to reformulate the structure and functions of the National Mining Agency (ANM), which he described as “completely incompetent”, to resolve the more than 9,000 applications for securitization and concession contracts and thus advance in the process of formalization, recognition and legalization.

Today, according to the Mesa, 87% of the country’s mining exploitation units are illegal, of which 2,676 are small mines that have more than 10 years of operation.

In the same way, he rejected the maintenance of permanent mining titles, which he described as fattening mining concession contracts, “without any progress in exploration and less in exploitation, with the consequent serious damages and social and economic conflicts caused to ancestral mining ”, since it considers that with the zero expiration policy they cannot carry out their extractive activities.

On the contrary, it supported the approval of bills 440 of 2020, which is being carried out by the Fifth Commission of the House of Representatives on banking in the mining sector, and 314 of 2020, which is being carried out by the Fifth Commission of the Senate, by which the legalization and formalization of small mining and traditional mining in Colombia is ordered.

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Finally, he questioned the abandonment of the State to subsistence miners and demanded “urgently” the formalization of the processes of traditional miners and that the persecution of the Government, the Prosecutor’s Office and especially the Police and the National Army against them cease. and its activity.

It is worth remembering that on April 20 and 21, representatives of the Mining Tables of the Pacific, Bajo Cauca, Antioquia, Caldas, Córdoba and Sur de Bolívar, in addition to indigenous and Afro-descendant associations, met in the city of Medellín. who are engaged in the activity.

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