La Prensa, September 11
Fifteen social organisations, who represent the backbone of the Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) and the government of President Evo Morales, publicly announced their “Manifesto to the Bolivian People” in which they call on all sectors to defend 18 strategic points in the new Political Constitution of the State, which foreshadows the expropriation of unproductive land, taxes on large fortunes and the confiscation of goods obtained via corruption.
The document presented during the Social Summit held in
The project does not recognise the prescription of crimes of corruption and signals that investigations can de retroactive.
All goods implicated in acts of corruption will be confiscated.
By approving the constitution proposed by these organisations, the state would have to define a tax on large fortunes, within the framework of a social and communitarian economy.
Here, the state would participate in strategic sectors of the economy, recognising private Bolivian investment as a factor in productive development.
Foreign investment would be subordinated to the plans of national development.
In regards to private property, the proposal established that the state would only respect, guarantee and protect medium and small private property, and communitarian, cooperative and mixed property, under the premise that is must guarantee a social function.
It established the expropriation without indemnification of latifundios [owners of large tracts of unproductive land], and its immediate distribution between producers and communities from the countryside and city that are willing to work the land for the benefit of society.
It emphasises the point which established the nationalisation of all renewable and non renewable natural resources under the control and dominion of the Bolivian people.
Moreover, it defines natural resources as “sovereigns”, completely prohibiting non-state organisations involving themselves directly in the administration, management, control and preservation of nature reserves, parks and forests, as well as biodiversity.
The social movements reclaim in their project for a new constitution that the state be defined as plurinational, communitarian and democratic where all the peoples, cultures and languages have the same rights, opportunities and recognition in front of the law, institutions and society. The objective of this type of state, according to the social movements, is the well being and decolonialisation of
In this sense, it propose the designation of a plurinational public administration, for which all public functionaries should know the majority indigenous language of the region in which they work to be able to communicate with the people, and Spanish to communicate with the rest of the Bolivians, and a foreign language to be able to link up with the world.
The indigenous people recalled that the demand of the Constituent Assembly arose in order to guarantee the democratic unity of the country, equality amongst people, the collective rights of the indigenous peoples, the nationalisation of natural resources and the broadening out of social rights.
The head of the MAS fraction in the assembly, Roman Loayza, assured La Prensa last night that the proposal presented yesterday by the social movements is included in the project for the new Political Constitution of the State that MAS is pushing in the Constituent Assembly and emphasised that his party backed the manifesto in all its points.
Four levels of autonomy
The document anticipates that the constitution will enshrine municipal, departmental, regional and indigenous and originario autonomies, that guarantee the unity of the Bolivian state, with solidarity between regions and the democratic decentralisation of the country.
The project of the social movements demands the re-election of the president and the revoking of popular mandates of any elected authority, the election of authorities for the judicial power and the recognition of communitarian justice in the districts where there is an indigenous majority.
It signals that racism will be considered a grave crime against society and the state.
It also proposed the designation of a plurinational parliament with only one chamber, guaranteeing the same number of current representatives for each department.
The document carries the signatures of the United Union Confederation of Campesino Workers of Bolivia (CSUTCB), the Union Confederation of Coloniser of Bolivia (CSCB), the National Federation of Campesino Women of Bolivia “Bartolina Sisa”, the Confederation of Indigenous Peoples of the Bolivian East (CIDOB), the Confederation of Ethnic Peoples of Santa Cruz (CEPES), the Movement of those Without Land (MST), the Popular Civic Committee, the Federation of Neighbourhood Councils of La Paz, El Alto and Chuquisaca and the confederation of petty traders. As well, others that have signed included ex-mine workers, the Youth Organisations of Bolivia, the Students of the
Translated from La Prensa