The latest ¿Que pasó en Guatemala?, in English, arrived from PLQE, the Spanish and K’iche’ school, based in Xela.
Congress approves the largest national budget in history behind closed doors.
The morning of November 17, officers from the National Civil Police were situated around the National Congress, where Congresspeople would approve the 2021 budget of Q99,700,000,000.00 with national urgency, the largest in national history.
To prevent civil society organizations that rejected said budget from approaching, fences were installed to close off vehicle and walking pathways. Guatemalans against it have expressed that said budget, the highest and most deficient in history, constitutes a deal between President Alejandro Giammattei and Congress members, as evidence of the most absolute and blatant kleptocracy that has given way to the institutionalization of corruption. The problem is in the direction of spending and the outcome of that indebtedness because everything will go into the hands of corrupt politicians, trade unionists and contractors who are enriched by the resources of the state.
Hours later and after the National Budget was very quickly approved, an anti-riot Civil National Police unit proceeded to dissolve the peaceful demonstration in the Congress of the Republic that a group of citizens were maintaining in
rejection of the budget approved by the congresspeople.
VicePresident demonstrates his opposition to the budget approved by Congress
Guillermo Castillo, vicepresident of the country, joined social sectors who were opposed to the budget approved by Congress, and asked president Alejandro Giammattei to veto it. In his personal Twitter he wrote: “I am sharing the citizen’s demands in response to the approval of the 2021 Budget. Respectfully I have submitted a formal request that Mr. President VETO Decree 33-2020 and that technical authorities from diverse sectors analyze it and suggest the pertinent recommendations.”
President Alejandro Giammattei did not state an opinion about Castillo’s petition.
Peaceful protest against corruption in Xela
Simultaneously, and in the plazas of other cities in the country, peaceful rallies took place against the approved Budget, in opposition to President Giammattei and members of Congress. In this sense, there were rallies in Quetzaltenango, Mazatenango, Petén, Antigua, and other cities.
In Quetzalenango, representatives of social organizations, universities, and
members of civil society marched from the Centro Universitarios de Occidente
toward the central park, to demonstrate their rejection of Congress member’s and Giammattei’s government’s acts of corruption.