News

Honduras’ Cardinal Asks Politicians To Present Positive Proposals

The cardinal of Honduras, Oscar Andres Rodriguez, has asked the candidates who are seeking office in November to present proposals to construct a “better nation” which are not based on insults or partisanship but rather constructive proposals aimed at improving life throughout the nation.

“Today is the beginning of a new month which will bring us considerably closer to election day. Consequently it’s time that the politicians stop saying who said this or who insulted who and instead offer concrete proposals which reveal who will take our nation towards a new path.” Said Rodriguez.

The electoral campaign shouldn’t be fundamental about insults or degrading the opposing politicians, says the religious leader in declarations to HRN radio in Tegucigalpa. He instead emphasized that there will be young Hondurans who are voting for the time in November and “They don’t want to know who is insulting who and who isn’t being insulted but instead who will put forth proposals that will construct a better nation.”

Rodriguez stated that a better nation won’t be created with insults or with “division, hate, and rancor, or with looking back at the past which has already happened, but can be achieved by accepting responsibility for its construction and proceeding with dignity and respect.”

10 parties will be in the polls in November, and the current President will be seeking reelection, Honduras will elect a president, three vice-presidents, 128 congresspeople and 20 congresspeople to the Central American Parliament, as well as 298 municipal mayors. Honduras will be celebrating its 10th general election since its return to democracy in 1980 after nearly 20 years of military rule.

President Hernandez’s attempt at reelection has provoked fury from the political opposition due to the Constitution’s absolute ban on presidential reelection, which didn’t stop the Honduran Supreme Court from allowing presidential reelection in 2015.

The source for this article is a La Prensa article. As usual check out and support us through Patreon!

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Interinstitutional National Security Force Declares High Standards Of Safety Prior To Patriotic Festivals Tomorrow

The national police and security apparatuses are strengthening themselves nationally prior to the commencement of various celebrations that will take place tomorrow. The announcement came from authorities representing the Interinstitutional National Security Force (Fusina).

According to Fusina this national strengthening is being done to provide the maximum possible security to the thousands of Hondurans who will be engaging in civic celebrations which will take place tomorrow and throughout the weekend. Fusina is working with the Armed Forces, the National Police, Immigration, the National Directive of Intelligence & Investigation, and various attorneys and judges who have national jurisdiction.

The security institute explained that there are a series of strategies both passive and active to handle a variety of situations that could occur during the nation’s day and weekend of celebrating and patriotism. The security institutes are asking the population to carry their IDs, drivers licenses, vehicle registration, and to not carry objects which could be expected to harm others such as weapons, guns, and others.

Other codes of conduct that are recommended are for people to not drink alcohol or other substances which alter human behavior, to park vehicles in safe places, have children under control, not to display signs with obscene or immoral messages, and to not show off valuable objects or leave them unattended.

The source for this article is a El Heraldo article.

Another Communicator Killed In Omoa, Cortes

A social communicator was killed earlier today in Omoa, Cortes, in the northern region of the country. His name was William Flores and he worked for Channel 22 in Omoa. While he was being murdered another person, a woman who possibly worked alongside him was injured.

His murder took place in the Santa Isabel neighborhood  where he and his companion were intercepted by unknown criminals. After the attempts on their lives both were moved to a private clinic in Puerto Cortes where the communicator passed away.

The source for this article is a brief post which appeared on La Prensa earlier today.

School Serves As Dividing Line Between Honduras And El Salvador In La Virtud

A community named La Virtud is located in the department of Lempira and is situated in a very peculiar place along the Honduran-Salvadorian border. A school sits atop where Honduras and El Salvador connect, the school is named Profesor Aquilino Abrego Sosa, and makes it so that in theory one classroom can be in El Salvador and the other can be in Honduras.

According to inhabitants of La Virtud for years students at the school divided in two were treated the same and the school was apparently kept in one location but lately Honduran students have begun taking notice of how Salvadorian students get schools supplies, uniforms, and snacks, while Honduran students get nothing. This has led to an imbalance where Hondurans want to go the Salvadorian school, which led to the number of students in the Honduran side decreasing which compelled the Salvadorian teachers to move their classes away from the original school and into a new location. That hasn’t completely solved the problem with some students of Honduran origin crossing the border. “I go there because they give us food, uniforms, and on Monday’s we sing ‘saludemos'” Says Yesica Orellana a student in kindergarten in El Salvador. Saludemos is the national hymn of El Salvador.

This community is dangerously affected by a sad history of children who are abandoned and lack the basic necessities needed to survive and thrive in schools: many don’t have uniforms, food, a bed, and in order to sleep they go onto hammocks surrounded by mosquitoes. These students go to class not very far from the excrement of livestock and dirty puddles while their parents search for ways to feed them and themselves. The natural environment they live in gets worse when it rains because the rain creates thick areas of dirty water and causes the Goascoran river (a river nearby that divides Honduras and El Salvador) to overflow without much difficulty.

Much of the region La Virtud is located in and its inhabitants go near are cold areas where jackets and blankets are necessary to be safe and keep oneself healthy.

Students lack backpacks, school supplies, tennis shoes for PE, and the schools don’t have libraries or educational materials. Not to mention the need for campaigns to educate students and residents of La Virtud about personal hygiene and dental health despite the fact that El Salvador does have such campaigns but they don’t visit every school.

Many children in the area don’t have clothes or shoes, not to mention toys since their parents aren’t likely to be able to buy them things to entertain themselves with.

El Heraldo reached out to the National Institute of Statistics (INE) for information about quality of life in this area and the population believed to live there (although it’s theorized that the number in 2015 was around 6,640) but the only information the INE sent them was information from 2014’s consensus for the region of Nahuterique. Information about this region’s access to education, health, and basic services is virtually nonexistent as is information about levels of poverty in the area.

The source for this fascinating yet saddening article is a strangely untitled El Heraldo article.

Mipymes Employ Over Half A Million Hondurans Nationwide

Micro, small, and medium sized businesses (also known as mipymes) have turned into the one of the strongest arms of the Honduran economy according to data from the Secretary of Economic Development (SDE). Nationwide there are between 550,000 and 700,000 mipymes which generate some 70% of the jobs which currently exist within the private sector, which translates to more than half a million jobs according to German Perez Destephen a representative of the National Industrial Association (ANDI).

More than 40% of these businesses are located in the urban areas of the country and 60% are located in the rural areas of the country, with the heaviest concentrations being (rather unsurprisingly) in Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula, according to Perez Destephen. “The majority of businesses in the mipymes section operate commercially including hotels and restaurants.” This group represents some 66% of all of the mipymes with the next section being manufacturers who make up 25% of all mipymes and the remaining 9% being made up of various businesses and business types.

New Undertakings:

According to bulletin study of marketplace labor of 2016 from the Honduran Council On Private Business (Cohep) there are some 370,000 people who generate revenue themselves and that number is growing.

Pedro Barquero, an executive director of the chamber of commerce and industry of Cortes (CCIC) explained that in the last few years there’s been an explosion of new businesses and ideas which eventually became mipymes, and that this has been caused in part by a former lack of space for young people who are now turning into an economically active population. “The lack of employment caused many young people and many older people as well to create their own businesses to employ themselves. That’s why it’s important to create ideal conditions for them to develop their business ideas and guide them into becoming sustainable and functioning business models.” Says Barquero. He also says it’s necessary to ope the windows of the market so that businesspeople can sell their goods openly and freely, not to mention the need to give young people business loans to finance their businesses, and advice on how to prepare and form their businesses.

Mario Kafati, vice-minister of the Micro, Small, and Medium Business and Social Sector of the Economy agencies of the SDE has talked about the importance of this sector saying: “Mipymes generate a significant part of the gross domestic product of the country and that’s why it’s critical that we support this sector. We’ve developed programs and made funds available for financing these small businesses so that they can one day become big businesses.” Says Kafati.

Forming A Business:

One of the biggest challenges for this segment of the businesses in Honduras is managing to successfully form and formally come into existence.

According to representatives of the National Association of Medium and Small Businesses in Honduras (ANMPIH) only 20% of mipymes are formal businesses with 80% operating clandestinely. That isn’t stopping efforts to reverse these statistics, and Esperanza Escobar (President of ANMPIH) has worked tirelessly to help create Centers Of Business Development (CDE-Mipyme) and are now located throughout the country. Esperanza is still working to strengthen this sector through consulting, workshops, and permanent coaching. “One of the biggest difficulties for these small businesses is the administrative parts of owning a business. Many manage to open their businesses but they can’t keep them afloat due to a lack of administrative and financial discipline.” Says the president. Her efforts with the support of the CDE-Mipymes and promoted by the Economic Development Secretary as well as the support of influential actors within the private sector have managed to help keep many businesses alive and to develop many new businesses as well.

The President Of Cohep:

Luis Larach, president of Cohep has said that it’s crucial that mipymes move to get the regulations of “monotributo” approved and that the processes to register as a business get simplified, which currently are very tedious which is a significant obstacle for many small businesses. Luis stated that many mipymes close due to high costs and lengthy processes which are currently necessary to obtain the permits and licenses needed to operate formally. “Various administrations have created a complex administrative system which has resulted in the deaths of numerous mipymes. We cannot ignore the progress we’ve made so far to lift this sector up but there is much to do.” Says Larach.

The source for this article is a La Prensa article published just an hour ago.

 

 

Guns, Drugs, Counterfeit Money, And More Found During Raids Into Homes In Tegucigalpa

Drugs, cellphones, weapons, computers, and counterfeit cash have been found and seized early this morning in various homes throughout Tegucigalpa after a well-executed series of raids were conducted by various agents of the Military Police For Public Order (PMOP). At 6 in the morning raids began in the neighborhood of Jerusalen with various addresses to raid and permission to conduct those raids where they would find and seize cocaine, marijuana, weapons, and cellphones among other things previously hidden in the neighborhood.

Authorities additionally reported the discovery of 69,000 lempiras via bills of 500 lempiras each that have been confirmed to be counterfeits. These bills were hidden inside of caches presumably in homes raided by authorities.

The purpose of the raids was not just to discover and decommission contraband but to seek out members of a criminal group operating in the area, which is a neighborhood with lots of conflicts.

Jerusalen is just a few blocks away from the Arturo Quezada neighborhood where various violent deaths have been reported which are allegedly tied to a turf war between members of various gangs operating throughout Tegucigalpa for chances to sell drugs.

Until now the authorities haven’t revealed the objectives of these raids in depth but hopefully more details will come to light later today.

The source for this translation is an article from El Heraldo.

 

Dolores Community Leader: Authorities Have Forgotten Us

“Help from Honduras hasn’t arrived and El Salvador is following Honduras’s example, they’ve abandoned us.” Said the leader of Dolores a community , Francisco Chavez. It seems that the only visits they’ve had from government officials (at least from the Honduran government) are members of the Commission of Secure Borders and limits and the Secretary of Human Rights, Justice, Governing, and Decentralization (SDHJGD), but the ministers and presidents are not aware of the situation here.

Chavez’s statements make it clear that he and his community feel manipulated by the government officials who’ve left them high and dry.

Even the mayor of Opatoro has abandoned them having not arrived to assist them in preparing to go to the secretaries throughout Tegucigalpa and seeing if they remembered their promises to the people of Dolores.

They hate that the highway to them is in shambles and they are practically stranded because the cars that travel to and from their community run the risk of going in circles or becoming immovable in a storm. It’s gotten to the point where the only safe way to travel is to ride a horse or walk. To illustrate this just consider that in order to ride the 7 in the morning bus which detours to San Sebastian they’d need to wake up at 1 in the morning and travel through the mountains to get to the station where the bus passes by.

“Because of that we are urging the government to act. In El Salvador the roads are better and it’s clear that their government takes action.” Mr. Chavez has commented with great sadness that despite 25 years of being a part of Honduras some authorities have told them that they won’t be helped because they are seen as Salvadorians.

Here people survive through cultivation of the Earth but when there’s a drought they suffer, and just last year they received some supplies from the government but just for a few days.

“This winter the cultivation of corn is so-so. We’re going to have food for the next year but when our excess crops are sold some people in our area won’t have any food.” Says the community leader.

The selling of corn is a source of income and some travel to El Salvador to sell their food and to get there they just cross the border to get to the other side of the river. Some families are dependent on the remittances of their family members abroad in the United States.

“We’ve asked authorities to act relative to the roads because right now all of our mercendise goes to El Salvador.” Says Mr. Chavez. Many people in the community no longer desire for their community to be part of Honduras out of a sense of frustration at the lack of responsiveness from the government.

The source for this article is an El Heraldo article.

The Health Ministry Of Honduras Is Expecting A Big Increase In Their Budget

An increase of 536,000,000 lempiras will be given to the health sector if the current projected budget for the year of 2018 is approved this week in the council of ministers. Of this increase some 20 million will be to pay for electricity.

The general administrator of the Health Ministry, Armando Ramirez explained that some 16.6 million lempiras will be for scholarships for some 264 nursing students and 158 dentistry students.

Some 357 million will be to sent to decentralized medical care facilities which will help over 1,500,000 people. The Hospital School will be getting a bonus of 77.6 million lempiras which which be used to pay the salaries of 241 nurses and some 2,000 administrative employees.

This news comes from a La Prensa article.

10,000 Doctors & Nurses Are Unemployed In Honduras

At least 10,000 healthcare providers are waiting with their arms crossed hoping to be employed soon. Of that 10,000 at least 7,000 of them are doctors according to the president of the Medical College of Honduras (CMH) Suyapa Figueroa.

“The government is preoccupied with hiring foreign doctors and healthcare providers despite the thousands of qualified Hondurans waiting for jobs.” Said Ms. Figueroa. The situation as it relates to auxiliary nurses is similar since at least 2,000 are waiting for the results of a content announced by health authorities.

“The main problem is that the jobs get covered sporadically which makes it so that the number of people who need to work to get the work done are not working.” Says the president of the national association of nurses and auxiliary nurses of Honduras, Josue Orellana. According to Figueroa and Orellana the solution is to invst more in Honduran professionals.

Delia Rivas, Honduras’s health minister announced in February that throughout the year there would be various contests to help unemployed qualified medical professionals and the first one happened in May and sought to provide 200 medical professionals with employment. El Heraldo reached out to the health minister for more information concerning the limbo health care providers find themselves in but didn’t get any comments back.

This was an El Heraldo article originally published in Spanish.

Honduras’s Child Congress Asks That The Violence Throughout Honduras Be Ended

Congresspeople from the 21st Children’s Congress of Honduras ask that the nation’s officials confront the violence that pervades life in Honduras, bullying, global warming/climate change, and a vigilance law that affects homes and schools.

One of the congresspeople representing Francisco Morazan presented a motion to make authorities further improve mechanisms which sought to confront violence nationwide in the country which faces an average of three killings a day.

The 128 student congresspeople represent students in schools from each of the country’s 18 departments, and were honored by the National Congress earlier today as part of “Honduran Children’s Day”.

Protecting and caring for children, better schools, more classes and materials in schools, and other school related items were among many of the initiatives planned by the young congresspeople. Maria Jose Ramos a representative from Santa Barbara told the EFE that the children of Honduras deserve to have their human rights respected. Her congressional initiative is to create a law of “strict vigilance” in homes and schools financed by the State so that children can have a “good home life, a good upbringing, and a good life”.

It’s known that it’s quite often the case that Honduran children “do not have the privilege to enjoy their rights, and thus go to the streets,” because oftentimes in their homes they are “maltreated” physically, psychologically, and emotionally.

Ramos also fought for the approval of laws in favor of equal education and health reforms so that “all children can benefit from the same rights”.

Unicef Representative Luz Angela Melo Comments On Children’s Congress:

The Children’s Congress is sponsored by the United Nations Children’s Fund and by the Secretary of Education. As part of her statements supporting the Children’s Congress Luz Angela Melo (the Unicef representative in Honduras) stated that the children of Honduras deserve to freely express their opinions. Luz Angela Melo also stated that Unicef wants children in Honduras to be “protagonists who actively and authentically participate in the decisions that have to do with their lives.” and advocated for adults to offer children “better opportunities” so that they can live in “protective environments”.

She reinforced the importance of “redoubling the efforts to permit social inclusion and active participation of children in public life”. She also asked for the advancement of “the articulation of Honduran institutions” to achieve “a single system of protection for the rights of children” so that these improvements in the lives of children and society itself can happen in an “efficient manner”.

The little congresspeople also urged for the creation of a law which seeks to combat all types of violence, bullying, and discrimination throughout schools. The motion to combat bullying was introduced by the representative from Francisco Morazan, Jose Antonio Molina who argued that children and young people have a right to live free from aggression and physical intimidation. “Bullying is affecting us physically, psychologically, verbally, and socially” said the young congressman to journalists, and it’s worth noting that the well-spoken child is just 10. Saying that it’s a “problem affecting the entire world” the young congressman also advocated for laws which seek to halt global warming/climate change.

Educational and legislative authorities agreed to take a look at all of the initiatives proposed by Honduras’s children congresspeople for the purpose of eventually making at least some of them objectives for their real congressional campaigns.

The source for this translation is a La Prensa article, and to better support our publication please check out our Patreon!