Garcia Linera: In Bolivia we are dismantling a socially unjust system.

Washington, September 13 (ABI) – The vice president of the republic Alvaro Garcia Linera, in a speech given here today in front of the protocol session of the Organisation of American States (OAS) signalled that Bolivia is democratically dismantling a socially unjust system that excluded the great majority and benefited only a few.

“We are passing through a process of the dismantling of a terrible social apartheid, inherited from colonial eras” sustained the vice president during his speech, in which he explained the process of change that is operating in the country and which will have its definitive institutionalisation through the Constituent Assembly.

Within this framework he described the importance of the Constituent Assembly for the country and said that the most important thing is that “apartheid is dismantled” in a democratic manner, in dialogue, taking up differences, conflicts and tensions, but within the sphere of reason, in the climate of dialogue, of a verbal confrontation and not a social confrontation.

He indicted that other societies with the same problems, resolved their issues of exclusion through cruel civil wars, but Bolivia has been doing it through political and constitutional reforms.

Garcia Linera, pointed out that the indigenous sectors, the social sectors, the parties and the actual government, consider the Constituent Assembly to be the best democratic scenario within which to resolve old fissures, bridge old distances, so as to suture and stitch up old wounds that separated our societies in cultural terms, in classist terms, and regional terms.

He commented that nowadays the Constituent Assembly, as a grand democratic scenario, is already completing one and a half months of activity and from a distance could be seen to be advancing in a number of agreements, although it is passing through a number of conflicts and foreseeable tensions.

I have faith that this tension will have to be resolved through some mixed, equilibrated, combined system that articulates the two thirds and absolute majorities in order to define procedures and rules of debate, he underlined.

Nevertheless he considered that these tensions would continue to reproduce themselves from now until two or three month’s time, when the issue of state regime, autonomies or no autonomies, land regime, and the hydrocarbon regime are discussed.

The vice president of the republic explained that they has been on the edge of the abyss many times in Bolivia, in 2000, in 2003, in 2005, when society appeared to envelope itself in a vortex of confrontation and death, but when the edge of the abyss is reached, society returns to reflection, consciousness and has always found a democratic and peaceful exit to resolve these dissidences.

He sustained that today Bolivians have taken up this new period not with fear, but rather with a great deal of hope, despite the tensions and confrontations that can present themselves.

They could not longer continue to hide them in the closet, or in the basement, because their are so many injustices, so many excluded people, that it was now unsustainable, it is necessary to open the doors, and we have to look at ourselves in the mirror of our weaknesses, of our strengths, of our distances, of our differences and our confrontations, he expressed.

Garcia Linera, assured that what prevails today is try to resolve these distances through procedure, through reflects that are within the framework of a peaceful resolution, and concerted and negotiated from those distances.

We believe that it will be as a generation, not only as a government, that we can achieve this result, and we would have completed the mission of our times, give Latin America, give the world, give ourselves and our ancestors the solution for something that has been pending for over 180 years, equality of rights, inclusion of the majorities and well being for those majorities, he declared.

In his exposition, vice president Garcia Linera emphasised that Bolivia is going through a process of reaccommodating of the power elites, of the elites in the institutions that regulate this distribution of power, and he remarked that the distribution of power will always be marked by tensions and conflicts.

“The groups that before had power now have to learn to share power, and the social groups that never had power and that want to have all the power, have to learn that they will have power, although not all the power” he said, adding that this would be a costly process.

Garcia Linera predicted that in 3 months or in six months, there would once again be moments of tension, confrontation and distancing in between these different blocs and social groups that are intervening in this new distribution of power.

He indicted that the non-indigenous people, who always had the power now have to share this power with the indigenous peoples, the indigenous majorities that never had power, now have to sit together on the same table as those that have power, and that will certainly leave space for the formation of new elites with a culturally diverse composition, and to the widening of rights.

He noted that this is a process that all the countries in the world have passed through, in our case we are doing it today, and it is certainly very democratic. “The broadening of power is an act of democracy. Equality, or processes of equality, between indigenous and non indigenous is a democratic act”, he sustained.

Translated from Bolivian Information Agency

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