January 24, 2012

CEP condemns murder of Colombia oil union leader

The president of one of Canada’s largest unions, the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada, says both the Columbian and Canadian governments need to act now to denounce the latest murder of a trade union leader in Colombia.

Maurico Redondo and his wife Janeth Ordóñez Carlosama were murdered by two gunmen in their home in Putumayo on January 17, leaving their five children orphaned.  Maurcio was a provincial leader of the Union Sinical
Obrera (USO), and both he and his wife were activists in a community group that advocated for better working conditions, environmental stewardship and labour and human rights in the booming oil and natural gas fields of south-western Colombia.  The murders followed telephone threats to three other USO leaders and a bomb threat at USO’s regional office in Orito.

“Once again we see that activists for decent work and decent communities continue to be targets in Colombia,” says CEP President Dave Coles.  “We mourn the deaths of Maurico Redondo and Janeth Ordóñez and call on
Colombian authorities to bring those responsible to justice.  We also call on the Canadian Government to cancel the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement, until the Colombian Government meets its international obligations to respect labour and human rights.”

CEP is the largest union in several key sectors of Canada’s economy, including forestry, energy, telecommunications, and media.

For more information:
Duncan Brown
National Director – Graphical
Humanity Fund Executive Secretary
(613) 230-5200 ext 281
(416) 605-4665

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