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Picketers plan an express camp: Nation will not receive them and the City seeks to avoid another traffic chaos

Left-wing piqueteros leaders are heading to carry out this Thursday a new protest in front of the Ministry of Social Development demanding greater coverage of social plans.

Until now, there is a guarantee to advance with a “permanence” in the place, a kind of camp expressfrom eight in the morning, and that can last until the afternoon. From the City of Buenos Aires they try to avoid a new chaos traffic like last week, while in Nation refuses to receive the leaders of the Piquetera Unit that they will mobilize

“A permanence is defined, but we have to meet on Wednesday to see how the protest will continue,” he told Clarion Silvia Saravia, main referent of Foot neighborhoodsone of the piqueteros groups that calls for mobilization to the gates of Social Development.

Among the leaders they still hope that some Social Development official will receive them between Wednesday and Thursday. It will not be Juan Zabaletathe holder of the portfolio, since he will be in Asunción (Paraguay) participating in a summit of ministers of the sector, and it is not expected that a second ministerial line will do so either.

Juan Zabaleta remains firm in his refusal to receive picket leaders. Photo: Marcelo Carroll.

In the middle of a mobilization, they will not be received. The idea was to be able to talk this Thursday, but under these conditions, no,” they categorically denied a meeting with the picketers sources of Social Development consulted. And they recalled that Zabaleta “already received them six times, the last one on April 11, where food solutions were given to the issue.”

The central focus of the piqueteros protests has to do with the demand for new quotas for the Empower Work programwhich depends on Social Development and already brings together more than 1.2 million beneficiaries.

The Ministry has been denying the increase in that number, although it had to adjust the amounts paid, due to the advancement of the Minimum Vital and Mobile Salary quotas. To the date, each beneficiary is paid $19,450 per month, half of what someone who charges the SMVM receives. All in a very high inflationary context, above 60% in the last year.

In the middle of that bidding, the City intervenes again in order to avoid a camp that complicates free transit or that slows down the circulation of the Metrobus. “We are going to do the impossible so that they do not camp, that is why we are going to summon them to talk on Wednesday,” say sources from Buenos Aires.

Silvia Saravia, leader of Barrios de Pie.

Silvia Saravia, leader of Barrios de Pie.

The criticisms from Uspallata towards the Casa Rosada are very explicit. “We ask ‘Juanchi’ Zabaleta so that someone receives them, it cannot be that the Government ‘balconies’ this issue, which is their problem, not ours. They were the ones who created this system of extortion that they now denounce. It is an exhausted system, but a response has to come from politics,” they maintain.

If there are no unforeseen events, Thursday’s march will be one of the countless that have been taking place since the beginning of the year. In mid-March, the first camp took place against Social Development, which was repeated to a greater extent at the end of that month, extending for 48 hours.

But there was new protests on April 13, when the piqueteros leaders called for a mobilization from different points of the city and even Plaza de Mayo. The last one was last Thursday. June 9in a mobilization that completely altered the traffic of Buenos Aires and for which crosses were generated on the Pueyrredón Bridge between protesters and the Prefecture.

The Work Empowerment is a program administered by the Social Economy Secretariat, for $227.1 billion annually, and which depends on the piquetero leader Emilio Pérsico, today in charge of that onerous budget. So far this year, 70% of those funds have already been used.

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