The Colombian Ministry of Health has asked to consider postponing the marches on Wednesday April 28 against tax reform due to the severity of the pandemic in the country.
Health Ministry’s Epidemiology Director Julián Fernández Niño has called for alternatives to the national strike that do not involve physical contact and crowds to be considered, but has also insisted on postponing them until intensive care units are reduced .
Health Minister Fernando Ruiz supported the petition shared by the Prosecutor General’s Office, which recommended that the organizers of the public marches and the participants “act accordingly at the difficult moment the country finds itself”. “According to the Colombian media ‘El Espectador’.
“The marches at this time are an attempt of life,” said the mayor of Bogotá, Claudia López, as in her city the red health alarm was prescribed when it is over 90 percent of the occupation in the intensive care unit.
However, Bogotá is not the only area in this situation. The department of Antioquia is confronted with a high utilization rate in intensive care units with only 3.6 percent of the available capacity. Cesar, Valle del Cauca, Meta or Risaralda are others that have a high hospital saturation, while a total of 5,904 patients live in these places nationwide.
In addition, there is the lack of oxygen in the treatment of those affected, so that the government has allowed imports of the inputs to run free in order to cope with the emergency in certain parts of the country, reports Radio Caracol.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health reported 12,839 cases and 448 deaths on the last day on Monday.
Colombia thus accumulates 2,787,303 cases and 71,799 deaths since the outbreak of the pandemic, which currently has 103,686 active cases.
Between the dates and the demands of the authorities, the organizers of the marches have reiterated their intention to take to the streets this Wednesday. The National Unemployment Command stated that a 24-hour strike against the tax reform project with mobilizations in Bogotá and other cities will take place.
The President of the Central Unitary of Workers (CUT) – one of the organizing unions -, Francisco Maltés, has indicated in this regard that he “will come out in the multiple demonstrations and concentrations with the three demands made by the national government”: wearing a mask, social distancing, and hand washing with alcohol “.