The ruling Movement to Socialism (MAS) is trying again to take over the Permanent Assembly of Human Rights of Bolivia (Apdhb) with parallel leadership in order to avoid serious complaints of human rights abuses by the blue party against those it sees as opponents.
“You can form the parallel guides you are considering, but you will never be able to replace the essence, the work of the Apdhb, the daily volunteering to meet all the demands of the people who need support. It is not the first time that the MAS has tried to deal with human rights, as this is the only body that disturbs it; unfortunately the office of the ombudsman is reacting to power, ”claims the former legal advisor of the Apdhb and current investigator of the Cedib Franco Albarracín.
He denounced that it is at least “the fifth time that a Congress has been convened to create a parallel organization within the framework of the Human Rights Assembly”.
He recalled that this practice is common in the MAS, as well as in Cidob, Conamaq, Adpecoca and the Medical College of Bolivia, with the aim of weakening organizations and having no resistance.
“Now there is an attack on the Apdhb, maneuver of the MAS, exactly when serious human rights violations are found and the institution is an obstacle, a stone in the shoes for the ruling party,” he said.
Manuel Morales, the chairman of Conade, said it was a bogus congress held in the Federation of Miners with the participation of members of the ruling party to elect Edgar Salazar as a parallel leader.
“This Monday the Apdhb will speak out before the new Masista attack, which wants to take away the institutions, attacks the institutionality; Apdhb is affiliated with the International Federation for Human Rights, so there is a law protecting human rights defenders, ”he said.
In February 2017, members of the MAS under the leadership of the late mining leader Orlando Gutiérrez forcibly broke into the House of Human Rights, ambushed it and intimidated its president Amparo Carvajal into handing over the keys to the facilities, threatening otherwise it would take force .
In its 2019 report on Bolivia, Amnesty International condemned the highest levels of government in Bolivia, including then-President Evo Morales and his government minister Carlos Romero, publicly accusing human rights defenders and organizations and threatening their policies.
During this government there were several attempts to take Apdhb, even the Wila Lluchus of the MAS threatened to burn down Amapro Carvajal’s house.
GOVERNMENT PARTY PROMOTES COMMITTEE
During an apocryphal congress of suspected human rights leaders in Santa Cruz, the Blue Party tried to activate the so-called Popular Civic Committee, a parallel organization to the Civic Committee pro Santa Cruz.
Faced with this possibility, a group of citizens came to the headquarters of the Department of Small Industries and Crafts (Cadepia) of Santa Cruz to prevent former President Evo Morales from celebrating the anniversary of the Bolivian People’s Committee.
The creation of a parallel citizens’ committee by the social sectors of the MAS began in September 2006 when it provoked the rejection of the Committee for Santa Cruz and the members of the Unión Juvenil Cruceñista and citizenship.