Agricultural Workers Protest Against The IRS And In Support Of Alvaro Noboa

In a demonstration taking place this morning outside the IRS offices, workers from the agricultural company belonging to Noboa Corporation demanded the IRS allow them to work in peace.

Noboa Group worker

Alexandra Mina joined the demand of the workers, defending their work and blaming President Rafael Correa.

Alexandra Mina worker from Clementina Hacienda.

We are from the hacienda. We live here; we don’t pay rent. Mr. Noboa gives the workers free housing. We have a reliable source of work. The contract we have is stable, and it’s not like the Government, which gives us a contract for six months, a year, and then you end up unemployed.

At Noboa, we have stable contracts, we are workers with 20, 30 years of service. That’s what the Government has to see, the Government which is going to leave more than 7,000 families unemployed because they are going to get rid of the sources of employment. You tell me reporters, you tell me, reporters, which company has the Government taken and made productive? None. Every company which the Government has taken it has destroyed. It’s not interested in the people. He’s interested in populism. He’s interested in the vote because when there’s a campaign, he’s up against Noboa, and he didn’t do it before, but now, yes, now that Noboa wants to challenge him, he’s not letting him.

With a strong police presence, the workers denounced the political persecution carried out against Alvaro Noboa.  Carrying signs with phrases like, “Noboa means sources of work for the poor”, the workers came from Babahoyo, el Triunfo, and other regions, denouncing the Traffic Commission for having prevented the passage of vehicles carrying them to the IRS. This was confirmed by the head of Clementina Hacienda, Bernardo Manzano.

Bernardo Manzao Manager of Clementina Hacienda.

Teleamazonas Reporter: You didn’t have the necessary means to get here, nevertheless, in the end you did it.

Bernardo Manzano:  That’s right. We did it. We came on foot, in taxi, by bus, by any means, because they stopped us at the entrance to Guayaquil and made us take a detour, and we had to change buses in order to create a demonstration here in front of the IRS and to say to Carlos Marx Carrasco that he’s wrong, that what he is doing is illegal, that it’s not fair, that what we want is to work in peace.

Obviously, what the State and the Government want to show is that this is a purely political issue because the calculation that they have made are completely wrong. And we want to show, through the courts, that those calculation have been made incorrectly. We have initiated an petition for exception precisely in order to litigate and defend ourselves. That is what we want to show, that it’s bad, that it makes no kind of sense, and that what we want, here, is to do our work quietly and in peace. We are not politicians. What we are is workers and employees of this company, here for more than 20, 30 years, with more than 500 retirees who depend on this company, more than 7,000 workers who depend directly on the Noboa Company, more than 7,000 families who are asking – we haven’t all come because work has to go on – but we are a very representative group of more than a thousand people who are claiming their rights and supporting attorney Noboa.

The IRS is listening to sold-out ex-workers, so why not us? That was the question that Felix Carpio put to Carlos Marx.

Felix Carpio worker from Clementina Hacienda.

We are citizens, here, and we had to come on foot, by bus, sir, and if something would happen to us, he’s going to answer to us, no? right?

No, Mr. Correa, he doesn’t like being told the truth, whenever someone tells him the truth he’s a thug or a terrorist. But not here, no, we are workers, we’re heads of families, I’ve been working for 37 years for the company, and it isn’t right that I lose all my seniority on some man’s whim. I am a worker with a lot more years with my company and I will defend it, like Mr. Carrasco said yesterday:  that’s the way it will be with my life, and I am going to defend it.

Because yesterday they came, and they are a bunch of sell-outs, and they attended Mr. Carrasco, he even embraced them. They are a bunch of bitter people. Why?  Because the company threw them out as a bad lot, just like the Government threw out a few teachers, a few doctors. In the same way, the company threw them out. And now they come crying and yes, that’s just what the government likes. They come here to lodge complaints about Mr. Noboa. So why don’t they give us the same reception, since we’re people too, and we are also workers?