16 May 2018
The biodiversity of a territory, the Community Council of the Guajuí River, in the Colombian Pacific, the culture of its people, 7000 Afro-Colombians, and their own survival are nowadays, at risk. This is witnessed by Protection International and Pensamiento y Acción Social (PAS) in their latest article: “Conviteros: an African heritage of leadership in the middle of Colombian conflict”.
It tells the story of the daily difficulties faced by the residents of the Community Council of the Guajui River, one of the towns that, after the peace process and the consequent demobilization of the guerrilla group, hope to regain control of their territory.
However, more than 50 years of conflict, extreme poverty and corruption cloud this momentous opportunity for communities that are the fruit of the African heritage, which, according to PAS official Alicia F, “could stop over-mining, over-fishing and promote an economy like the one they want”.
These authorities, known as conviteros, can also promote collective actions for cohesion and the resolution of internal conflicts.
Protection International and PAS support, together with the Coordination of Community Councils and Grassroots Organizations of the Black People of the Pacific Coast of Cauca (COCOCAUCA), an “itinerant school” that seeks to improve the tools for self-defense of the convicts, so that they can work with greater knowledge and conviction within their communities.
Access the full article here