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Hundreds of Salvadorans march against water privatization

Demonstrators have marched through San Salvador to demand that lawmakers “move immediately to approve a long-stalled constitutional measure making access to water a human right.” The march was to protest an agreement “by a key committee in the Legislative Assembly to include representatives of industry and agri-business on the board of the National Water Authority. (…) The idea of including private-sector representatives in water management is supported by Arena and other parties ranging from center-right to right, while the governing leftist FMLN is opposed.” @ajplus says “people in El Salvador are fighting for the right to clean water. Droughts and attempts at water privatization could create a new wave of climate refugees.”

Source: www.efe.com

Ten years of gains in public healthcare, education, and social inclusion may well be reversed

Concerns are being raised about what policies toward the public sector the new president-elect, Nayib Bukele, will follow. “Bukele was mercurial as ever on the campaign trail, but his sponsor, GANA, has opposed abortion and marriage equality (a position Bukele shares), and supported water privatization and the death penalty. Ten years of gains in public healthcare, education, and social inclusion may well be reversed, and the current social movement struggles for the decriminalization of abortion and against water privatization may face devastating setbacks.”

Source: NACLA

Campaigners fear the creeping privatization of water

Campaigners fear the creeping privatization of water. “When a local government ruling in the Salvadoran town of Nejapa stopped Coca-Cola from drilling wells in the community, residents thought their campaign against the drinks giant had ensured their continued access to clean water. But that 2015 success now seems under threat after the Salvadoran national assembly recently took steps activists believe will lead to the privatization of the country’s water supplies. ‘They are fragile ordinances, so the companies [are] looking for a way to avoid the local councils having stronger ones,’ said Santiago Rodríguez, a pastor with the Salvadoran Lutheran church who works in Nejapa and the surrounding areas. ‘The danger is that the local ordinances are weakened even more.’”