Flights to and from Colombia could be disrupted on November 21 after the union of air traffic controllers said they are joining a national strike.
The Civil Aviation Workers Union is the latest to join the strike that began as a labor union protest against pension reform plans, but has morphed into a general protest against the government of President Ivan Duque.
“We will join in rejection of the massacres of social leaders, as well as the dismal policies of this government,” union leader Martin Peñalosa was quoted as saying by La FM.
According to Peñalosa, at least half of its 3,000 members are expected to take part in an assembly scheduled between 6AM and 10AM in the morning.
Apart from rejecting the mas killing of human rights defenders and community leaders, the union leader said that the air traffic controllers demand an increase in civil aviation personnel, claiming that air traffic is already chaotic due to a personnel shortage.
While air traffic will be affected that day, the measures that have been taking by Aerocivil due to the lack of personnel are already affecting operations. For this reason, the call to workers is meant to no longer allow work overload so that we can work in shifts as established by law.
Union leader Martin Peñalosa
The announced participation of the air traffic controllers in the strike increase government concerns that the national strike could lead to unrest as seen in Bolivia, Chile and Ecuador.
The accumulation of students demanding an end to corruption, indigenous groups demanding an end to the killing of their leaders and others demanding Duque’s resignation are likely to form the biggest anti-government protests in years.
Duque’s whose far-right party received a beating in local elections last month, has refused to attend the concerns of any of the groups who have now teamed up.
Support for the president sank to 26% last week, according to Gallup.