Thursday, September 8, 2011

Animals Against Corruption!

Wearing monkey, rabbit and other masks, MIRA political party members protest corruption. 

This morning on the almost-always-active Plaza Bolivar, these demonstrators from the MIRA political party protested against corruption in Bogotá.

Mira Mayoral Candidate Carlos Guevara.
Bogotá's is reeling from the still-unfolding corruption scandal over the expansion of the city's Transmilenio express bus system along Carrera 10 and along 26th St., the avenue that goes to the airport. Mayor Samuel Moreno has been suspended from office because of the scandal and appears headed to trial. His brother, a senator, is already in prison. Both allegedly took kickbacks from the Nule clan, who received the original contract for the roadwork, and are in prison themselves.

The MIRA political party was founded in 2000 and seems quite succesfull and known as active, disciplined and not corrupt. MIRA has also carried out numerous charitable efforts, and even expanded into the United States. The party, however, is also closely linked to evangelical religious groups, making their ideology quite conservative. Undoubtedly, MIRA would like to roll back abortion rights and rights of gay couples and prohibit euthanasia. On their website, I see that they support causes including reducing the price of gasoline - certainly a popular one, especially amongst people of low-income and education, as evangelicals tend to be both here and in the U.S. However, when it's the ri
ch who own cars, fuel subsidies go primarily to the wealthy - and take resources away from education, law enforcement, hospitals and other needs.

Bicycle tourists get into the act!
By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours


Kevin Howlett said...

Interesting article Mike. This year seems like one long of corruption scandal after corruption scandal. Perhaps that more to do with the fact that the Santos government is laying bare previous wrongs than the emergence of new ones. Wonder what your view is. Interesting article reporting something I haven't seen anywhere else.

Miguel said...

Certainly, a closed society where corruption isn't investigated or prosecuted, appears to be corruption-free. And you do have to credit Colombia's press and prosecutors for digging into these things - including both suspended Mayor Samuel and even the still-popular administration of ex-Pres. Uribe.