In my previous note, I wrote of the killings committed by motorcycle pillion passengers on bus drivers in the capital. In a response worthy of Miguel Angel Asturias, the government have banned pillion passengers and the new law requires that motorcyclists wear bright yellow jackets and helmets, each containing their registration number. This is surely one way of criminalising a large number of people for whom getting around on a motorcycle is a valid transport alternative. If we are to consider that the motorcycle assassins are part of a strategy to destabilise the state, this law will prove futile.
The recent kidnapping of Gladys Monterroso, wife of the Public Prosecutor for Human Rights, has been linked by media and human rights groups to the recent release of a report into the police archives by the same prosecutor. While this may be the case, it does ignore the possibility that she was kidnapped for the work that she is doing in her own right. Sr Monterroso is an expert fiscal attorney, as well as a prominent member of the Encuentro por Guatemala political party.
Recent reports have described the questioning of prominent former military bosses, including Enrique Ríos Sosa, in relation to the massive theft of over 100 million US dollars, during the presidency of Alfonso Portillo. Ríos Sosa is the son of Efraín Ríos Montt, the man responsible for what the UN described as genocide during the 1980s in Guatemala. This is one example of the outright theft of resources continually being carried out by the elite on the people of Guatemala. If you wish to tackle corruption, it is useful to follow the money and who better to untangle the trails than an expert fiscal attorney.
Those people for whom serving La Patria is only a way to engorge themselves on the state’s resources do not appreciate having to appear for questioning. After all, they were only doing their duty and besides, ‘Daddy said I could’.