Peasants forced to collect fees in Nayarit on the Mazatlan-Tepic highway by Cartels

The “SCT” Ministry of Communications and Transportation steals from them and the “CJNG”
Jalisco New Generation Cartel requires them to charge at Nayarit toll booths. They are peasants and they are shit out of luck.

Since 2005, some 600 ejidatarios have demanded payment of compensation for the damage to their lands in six ejidos of 500 hectares in Nayarit, following the construction of the Tepic-Mazatlán highway, concessioned by the Ministry of Communications and Transportation to Promotora Inbursa. Last week, while they were demonstrating in the Ruiz toll booth, an armed group intimidated them and since then it has forced them to charge a fee to the motorists due to the passivity of the local authorities, accused the National Coordinator Plan of Ayala-National Movement. They also have taken the Acaponeta toll booth.

Dozens of peasants demonstrated in the toll booth Ruiz of the Tepic-Mazatlán highway to demand, as they have done for 14 years, the payment of compensation for their damaged land after the construction of the federal work. With firearms, a group of 15 people from organized crime arrived at their protest on Wednesday of last week in the afternoon and since then they have been “kidnapped” to force them to collect fees of 50 or 100 pesos to motorists and 200 pesos to the trailers, accused members of the National Plan Coordinator of Ayala-National Movement.

They called the Secretary of Public Security of Nayarit, commanded by Jorge Benito Rodríguez, but he did not answer the call.

“They arrived and took control of the booth […] They presented themselves as the Jalisco New Generation Cartel,” said a peasant woman who was in the place demanding the payment of her lands. “It is practically a kidnapping because although our comrades can return to their homes for a few hours, they are forced to return to the demonstration.”

“There are around 20 comrades held by these people who belong to organized crime and [are] threatened if they withdraw or stop fulfilling their time of demonstration. If the motorists do not want to cooperate, they break their windows, put tires on them and threaten the drivers with firearms until they give what they want. It is a mandatory payment and risks the integrity of our colleagues and drivers, “he said.

Another farmer who was also in the attack on Wednesday, April 10, assured that they will continue with their struggle for payment of compensation, but they will no longer take motorways.

“They came looking for money,” he evoked. “They already have a fee [in the toll collection]. Cars that go by, they ask for 50 pesos,  If it’s a truck, it charges 100. It’s not legal at all. They are from organized crime. They are extorting. What they want is the money and they put the people there representing the protest serving as cannon fodder. “


Acaponeta booth on the Tepic-Mazatlán highway 

Last Friday, a user of the highway complained on Twitter about the takeover at the Acaponeta booth, also on the highway: “Taking the booths of the Tepic-Mazatlán highway on the Nayarit side, DEMANDING a 100 peso cooperation and blocking your way if you do not want to cooperate! (sic), “he wrote.

According to the ejidataria, the Acaponeta toll booth has been taken over by the crime since February. “They arrived and we prefer to retreat before the threat of confrontation,” he recalled.

On Tuesday the Center for Human Rights “Antonio Esteban” accused that the retention of peasants for organized crime “demonstrates the inaction and acquiescence of the Ministry of the Interior to protect the ejidatarios who manifest themselves by the damages caused to their lands by the Tepic-Mazatlán highway, “he posted on his Facebook.

For his part, the spokesman of the National Coordinating Plan of Ayala-National Movement, Jesús Gutiérrez Valencia, accused that “indigenous and peasant organizations are not only attacked by government and paramilitary groups that serve cacique groups and transnational companies with costs in human lives, now we are also targets of organized crime groups with the authorization and consent of the State. “

Faced with the passivity of local authorities, they have tried to meet with the Federal Security Secretariat, led by Alfonso Durazo Montaño, to guarantee free demonstration without intervention by organized crime.

“With the federal government, we are waiting for what is going to be done and what is being proposed,” said the ejidataria. “When the new government came in, the situation was raised. He asked us for a month’s margin to pay attention to the demand. But today, after four months of government, there is no response and now we find that our mechanism of struggle is overwhelmed by organized crime. “


Part of the Tepic-Nayarit highway. 

The local press reported on April 6, three days before the attack, that before the collection booths were taken, the Secretary of Public Security, Jorge Benito Rodríguez, stated that “if the Commissioner of the [Federal Police] requires it, we will enter as public force and we will evict [the peasants]. “

This Tuesday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador addressed the issue of taking booths in the country as part of the Easter holidays.

“It’s looking for the way for agreements,” he said. “In some cases they are right because they were affected and they were not compensated. They were not paid for their lands. “

“In other cases, it is the way to get resources. That is not right, and it is already being addressed. We are convincing, persuading, there is no authoritarian government in Mexico. “

DEBT OF THE SCT SINCE 2005

Since 2005, around 600 ejidatarios from Rosa Morada, Santiago Ixcuintla, Ruiz, Acaponeta and Tecuala, Nayarit, -municipalities located in the area where Hurricane Willa passed in October 2018- have demanded compensation for their damaged lands.

There are around 500 hectares of the ejidos “San Francisquito”, “El Habalito”, “El Conchi”, “El Chilillo”, “Palmillas” and “Chicuras”. There they grow beans, rice, mango, jicama, pineapple, watermelon, among others.

“There are ejidatarios who lost from one hectare to four or five hectares. [The work] crossed half of its land. Besides, there are no mechanisms to continue cultivating the lands that were left on the other side. There are no bridges to access. A combine do not fit. There was no adequate planning to avoid damaging the peasants, “said the peasant member of CNPA-MN. “The misery that has been left in the lack of access to these lands is very marked. They have to go to work in other gardens. “

The Nayarit peasant agreed that the highway hurt them because “there are several parts where the roads broke down and there is no way to get through. There are no bridges or they are unfinished bridges that do not have a handle. The plots were divided. “

The Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT) has not given them a solution. The concession for the 238.3 kilometer highway was given by this unit in 2005 to Promotora Inbursa, owned by Carlos Slim Helú, for 1,612 million pesos. The investment in the work was 3 thousand 062 million pesos.

In March 2018, even in the last six years, the ejidatarios affected by the construction of the highway, completed in 2003, placed a stand outside the delegation of the SCT in Tepic, Nayarit.

“The SCT has not paid the impact of our plots. Of more than 30 agrarian nuclei in Nayarit, there are [six] expropriated and unpaid ejidos. The fire was ignited since 2005, “said the peasant Humberto in that protest. “It’s not fair that we bring the elderly people here and stand here making protests for the SCT to pay us.”

That time they hung a blanket outside the unit. “We demand the payment of 600 comrades for the invasion of the construction of the Tepic-Mazatlán highway,” he said.

But, in the absence of dialogue with the authorities, on March 26 of last year, they took the booths of Acoponeta and Ruiz from the Tepic-Mazatlán highway. They raised it in June, but they retaken both booths in January of this year. And then organized crime came.

Source: sinembargo

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