lunes, 6 de noviembre de 2017

After delivering 500 pounds of my harvest for 20 years, they took my land away

Small Farmers National Association identity card

Santa Clara, November 1, 2017

To: Julio Ramiro Lima Corso, First Secretary of the Villa Clara Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba

From: Marcos Martín Rodríguez

I have acquiesced to address you before I receive a reply to the situation I’m in. Since last September I lodged a complaint before the Santa Clara agriculture delegate with no reply to my letter. I inform you that I have been a victim of the lies and corrupt actions of the Agriculture Ministry officials in this province. This is my case:

Since the year 1980 I have worked the land in the La Teresita Farm, located on the Camajuaní Highway. Then, in 2009, I was given a small plot of land  and I had to then join the CCS El Vaqueritro Cooperativa de Crédito y Servicio (Credit and Services Cooperative). For almost 20 years I have delivered to them around 500 pounds every year, of what I harvested.

Unfortunately, on December 11, 2016, I was run over by an ox, while I was working the land, which logically prevented me from working for a while. I was never visited by any CCS member or representative or any agriculture official. Only an inspector of the Santa Clara Oficina de Tenencia de Tierra (Land Ownership Bureau), whose name I do not know, visited me and he summoned me to appear before the Agriculture delegate’s office.

CID Sara Cuba Delgado and Marcos Martín Rodríguez

Still recovering from my tragedy and unable to walk, I went before this official. He did not care about my situation and simply, without hearing my arguments, they took my land away, under the excuse that I had sold| it for 17,000 pesos and that I use to bet at cock fights. He took my legal documents, taking advantage of my low cultural level. Afterward, I went before Sureda, CCS El Vaqurito President, to ask for an explanation about the abuse, since I almost died and no one came to learn about my condition, knowing it was a labor accident while at work. Besides, I am one of the associates who strictly comply with deliveries and payments to the CCS. He told me that, as President, he never took the land away from me, that the responsibility is of those who came and took away my certification. He also told me that he does not want me to stop working.

I have sought help from everyone, but they all close their doors at me. With no fear or shame I sought help from these people you call “those in human rights” who are the only ones who have listened and guided me on how to claim my rights.

Mr. PCC Secretary, corruption is robbing the people, and the people are realizing that we can claim and defend our rights. I hope that you, as the most important person of the PCC will uphold our rights and enforce the country’s laws.

By Sara Cuba Delgado, CID Delegada Provincial (Provincial Delegate) and Defensora del Pueblo (People’s Defender).

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