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After six nights of protests, interim president of Peru resigns

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OperaMundi – Peruvian interim president Manuel Merino resigned from office on Sunday (15), after the death of two protesters during Saturday night’s protests, which marked the sixth consecutive day of demonstrations in the country.

Merino, then head of Parliament, had assumed the presidency on November 10, shortly after the impeachment of his predecessor, Martín Vizacrra, and would remain in office until the April 2021 general elections.

“I present my irrevocable resignation from the office of President of the Republic,” he declared in a speech to the nation. With only five days in office, Peru’s now former interim president was pressured to resign by the same Congress that brought him to power.

According to the Peruvian newspaper El Comercio, Merino will return to his position as parliamentarian, since he held the presidency of the country on an interim basis. Also according to the newspaper, Congress should meet to choose a new Board of Directors to decide the next president of Peru.

Delivery of positions

In the hours before the resignation, several ministers of the provisional government had already surrendered their positions because of the violence against protesters.

After Vizcarra’s ouster, thousands of people took to the streets of Lima to protest against Congress, which had already tried to pass an impeachment last September. On Saturday (14), the tension peaked with the death of two protesters due to the repression practiced by the police.

One of the dead is Inti Sotelo Camargo, 24, a hotel and tourism student who died in an emergency room in Lima. The victim’s father said the body had four marks of gunfire. The other dead was also a young student, Bryan Pintado Sánchez, 22.

“I deeply regret the deaths that occurred because of the repression by this illegal and illegitimate government. My condolences to the family of these civilian heroes who, exercising their right, went out in defense of democracy and in search of a better country, ”wrote Vizcarra on Twitter.

The former president was impeached on November 10, thanks to the votes of 105 of the 130 Peruvian deputies, who claimed Vizcarra’s “moral incapacity” for alleged bribes received when he was governor of Moquegua in 2011. The then president denied having received a bribe and said the accusations are not supported by the courts and prosecutors.

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Economy

more unemployment and more informality

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São Paulo – Government, businessmen and some parliamentarians were in tune with the defense of the bill that, if approved, would lead to the creation of Law 13,467 in 2017. The so-called labor reform, after all, would lead to the creation of millions of jobs. This would happen to the extent that it would end the rigidity of the legislation, which they treated as being “plastered”, facilitating hiring and giving the much-needed “modernization” to the Brazilian labor market.

Because the law completed three years on November 11 “and nobody celebrated, not even timidly”, recalls analyst Marcos Verlaine, from the Inter-Union Department of Parliamentary Advisory (Diap). “Among the expectations generated by the authors, the government of that time, the businessmen, who sponsored, defended and acted strongly in Congress to approve it, the media and reality, remained the harsh reality”, he says, in an article. He defines the measure passed by Congress as a “capital Trojan horse” to implode labor rights.

Collective bargaining?

The insistent defense of the “negotiated over the legislature”, a recurring expression at the time, was not to privilege negotiation, notes the analyst. “It was to remove rights, since the negotiations – both CCT (ccollective labor agreements) and ACT (collective labor agreements) – they never prevented, on the contrary, that the conventions surpass the CLT, nor that the agreements surpass the conventions. ”

The “millions” of jobs did not come, even before the pandemic. The growth in occupation was basically due to informal work. In 2016, the year before the “reform”, the country had 10.1 million unpaid employees in the private sector and 22.4 million self-employed workers. Last year, they were 11.6 million and 24.2 million, respectively (check table). The data are from the National Household Sample Survey (Pnad) Continua, from IBGE.

Modernization or precariousness?

Employment with a wallet fell. And the Gini index at work, which measures inequality, which until 2015 fell, rose again the following year and has not stopped.

The “reform” introduced hiring modalities, such as intermittent work. They were also presented as items of the necessary “modernization”, but union members and researchers identify them as additional signs of precariousness in the market. Although still small, the participation of the intermittent modality has been growing.

This week, the Federal Supreme Court (STF) began to judge direct actions of unconstitutionality against intermittent work. In his vote, the rapporteur, Minister Edson Fachin, considered the item unconstitutional and causing damage to workers’ health. But his colleagues Kassio Nunes Marques and Alexandre Moraes were in favor of the sport. The trial was interrupted by a request for view from Minister Rosa Weber.

If it is impossible to revoke the law in its entirety, Verlaine suggests specific changes, citing intermittent hiring. “It is necessary to negotiate with all political and social actors in order to bring about changes in this scorched earth scenario” he argues.

read more: ‘Labor Reform’: Stories of a False Promise and Changes in ‘Endless Destruction’

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