National Union of Sugarcane Cutters (SINALCORTEROS) condemns the
abominable murder of our general secretary, Daniel Aguirre Piedrahita,
perpetrated on the night of Friday, April 27, in Florida, Valle.
murder occurs in a context of widespread intolerance and violence that
affects the country, where workers’ and labor rights and freedoms are
trampled and trade unions are relentlessly harassed as they struggle
against domestic laws that violate ILO conventions, thus
contributing to make Colombia the most dangerous country in the world
for workers who fight democratically for their rights, and at the same
time the most profitable country for financial capitalists and
participated from very early on in the organization of sugarcane
cutters, even before the 2005 strike, he was also involved in the
determined struggle against outsourcing, and more recently he worked to
secure collective bargaining, as well as being active in the process of
unification of rural workers under SINTRAINAGRO, in line with the
decision of the United Workers’ Federation (CUT).
In the work
stoppages and strikes we had to stage, our compañero Daniel
helped with mobilization and organization tasks in workplaces, as well
as in the efforts to raise awareness nationally and internationally on
our labor conflict, as reported by CUT, Rel-UITA (IUF
Latin America), and the National School for Unions, among others.
He was also a
leading activist against the Free Trade Agreements that have
caused such great harm to the country in general and to national
agriculture and industry in particular, but above all to the working
demands that the authorities investigate this crime, find the culprits
and bring them to justice, and that it provide compensation for the
We call on all
workers to share in our repudiation of antiunion violence and to give
our full support to the organization of sugarcane cutters and the
continuing civil and democratic struggle to achieve sovereignty and
democracy for Colombia.
Let us not
allow this despicable action of the violent forces in our country hinder
our process of labor organization and demands. Let it instead strengthen
our collective struggle and civil commitment as guiding principles of
our union activities.
extends its most heartfelt condolences to his wife, Helena, his
daughters, Lorena, Daniela and Carolina, and all
his loved ones.
Jorge Eliecer Caicedo Alfonso Viafara
Florida, April 27, 2012