Nicaragua: President Ortiga considers change in new social security measures

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega has stated that he is willing to reconsider the unpopular social security changes which had sparked deadly protests in the country and led to the biggest crisis in the country. Many people have taken to streets over the government introduced changes which have increased contributions of workers and reduced their pensions.

The President has said on the state television address that the changes to benefits will not take place until July 1 and thus government has time to review the same after discussions with the private sector.

The private sector lobby of the country COSEP has refused to enter into any talks with the government unless the police repression is put to an end and all the people who had been detained during the peaceful protests are released in addition to reinstating freedom of speech without any reservations. COSEP has urged the government to take the desired steps soon for avoiding any further bloodshed. The police break down on the protestors have killed at least 6 people, five in Managua and the other in Tipitapa while many hundreds have been left injured as police used tear gas and rubber bullets for dispersing protestors. The Red Cross society has stated that most of the deaths have been due to use of firing by police.

President Ortega who is a Cold War antagonist of US has served one term in office in the 1980s and has been serving in office since he resumed power 2007. Ortega has been able to fuel stable growth by tightening his grip on power through his mix of socialist policies and capitalism. He has been able to establish a family dictatorship.

The latest protests which have killed about 6 people have been fuelled by changes to social security. The government has stated that the changes are important fiscally. Many retirees took to streets after the changes approved the changes who were soon also joined by businessmen and students. UNHCR has expressed concerns about the growing violence and urged the authorities to stop further attacks on demonstrators and also the media.


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