Broce - "The Strike Is On" (Last Great Act Of Defiance?)
Saturday, August 08 2009 @ 03:22 pm EDT
Contributed by: Don Winner
Editor's Comment: Several members of Ricardo Martinelli's cabinet have indicated his government has no intentions of paying any of the existing bus owners or drivers any kind of "compensation" as part of their plans to modernize Panama's public transportation system. These people have been working under "concessions" given by the government for literally decades. There are groups of bus owners who have strangle-hold monopolistic grips of control on sectors of the transportation industry. And, these same people regularly exercise their relative power over the government by organizing these strikes. The administration of Mireya Moscoso spent five years trying to figure out how to "fix" the public transportation problem. Their solution involved giving low cost loans, backed by the National Bank, so people could buy new buses to replace the aging Diablo Rojos. One of the buses purchased under that program was the bus that caught on fire and killed 18 people. Martin Torrijos also was unable to come up with a solution, even though they had the perfect opportunity to do practically whatever they wanted. The fatal bus fire happened on his watch, and the public would have supported just about anything at that point, but still they failed to come up with an actual solution. From what I've seen so far, I think Dionel Broce and the rest of the transportation sector is seriously underestimating the will of Ricardo Martinelli. If they fail to get in their buses and drive on Tuesday morning, then he can simply order the police to impound the buses and pull their license plates. He can also cancel the concessions held by the bus owners, and cancel the commercial driver's licences held by the bus drivers who go on strike. Then, he can turn around and grant the concessions to someone else, who is willing to actually do the damn job. I'm waiting for someone to say "screw these guys" and actually have the balls to tell them to pound sand. This is public transportation, not private, and these guys hold way too much power in their hands. In fact, I bet Martinelli is sitting at his dining room table, secretly hoping they actually do go on strike, so that he can come down hard and send a loud and clear message. Anyway, it's going to be an interesting week in hoo-ville...
Broce: ‘El paro va’
Manuel Vega Loo De prensa.com email@example.com LA PRENSA/Archivo
2:42 p.m. - El dirigente transportista, Dionel Broce, le aseguró a Prensa.com que el paro del sector transporte público se realizará siempre el martes 11 de agosto.
Broce indicó hoy, sábado, que a sus 63 años nunca ha retrocedido. “Nunca he ido hacia atrás en la historia de mi vida”, reiteró.
El dirigente recordó que hasta la tarde de hoy, sábado, no ha tenido ningún contacto con la comisión de Gobierno. “Solo tenemos las informaciones que ha dado la vocera del Presidente en los medios de comunicación”.
Enfatizó que la piquera de Pedregal y otras paralizarán sus labores el martes.
Los transportistas organizaron el paro porque quieren recibir una indemnización por dejar el actual sistema de transporte público.