Demonstrators blocked roads across Colombia’s oil producing regions, protesting against government plans to redistribute petroleum royalties, local media reported Thursday.
The road blocks and protests took place in nine departments, including Meta, Santander, La Guajira, and Huila, with protestors condemning the government’s proposed Act 013
legislation, which seeks to redistribute petroleum royalties evenly throughout the Colombia.
According to El Espectador, the government says it will equally spread the “jam” of royalties across the “toast” of the country.
Jose Juan Rivero, executive director of the Association of Petrol-producing Municipalities, Ampet, objected to the intended law and explained that the localities represented by his organization “would have to beg for funds” from the government to put new projects in place.
Olga Cecilia Hurtado, president of the Meta Civic Association, said the legislation would lead to poverty and a social emergency throughout the country.
Casanare Congressmen Jose Rodolfo Perez and Camilo Andres April joined the protest stating that the government had not compiled with previous agreements that sought to assure that the interests of petrol-producing regions would not be hurt, Caracol reported.
Colombia is the fourth largest producer of petroleum in Latin America and the fifth largest producer of carbon in the world. According to reports from the government and petroleum and mining companies, the protesters did not affect the production or export of petroleum and carbon, reported Terra.