Women in politics analyze and provide solutions against poverty
Putting families at the center of priority, motivating citizen participation, generating public and private alliances, better project-planning, following up on them and promoting land use planning, were some of the solutions presented by the different candidates for municipal elections to end poverty in the country.
Under the title of “It is possible to end poverty from local management” women politicians, candidates from different parties participated in Cerrito Forum 2021 with the aim of highlighting the importance of local management in addressing poverty.
Among the participants, we can mention Ana Paula Rojas, candidate for town councilor for Patria Querida in Asunción; Rebeca Sosa, candidate for town councilor for the PLRA in Benjamín Aceval; Noelia Cabrera, candidate for Mayor for PLRA and Alianza in Benjamin Aceval; and Antonela Gulino, pre-candidate for town councilor for the ANR in Ciudad del Este, under the moderation of Soledad Núñez, executive director of Alma Cívica.
From a current analysis of how local governments acted in the face of the pandemic, Rojas said that most municipalities are mainly spectators, who come to the needs immediately, but without a background solution. “I did not see them visiting families or worrying about them, to find a way to tackle poverty and find out about their real needs,” she added.
She indicated that there is an absence of the Government and that this always provokes the mobilization of citizens to respond to the needs. “All the solutions implemented are immediate, they only focus on what is happening at the moment and do not see beyond that. Municipalities do not offer comprehensive and sustainable solutions to end poverty. In addition, it requires the accompaniment of local authorities, through major works to watch over their citizens,” she assured.
Sosa said that patch-type solutions, camouflaged by privilege and patronage, are the priorities of many municipalities, because they take advantage of the needs of families to satisfy specific needs. “The problem is also rooted in, from the poor decentralization of public entities. There is a lot of work there,” she said.
She pointed out that in the communities far away from the Capital, women act as entrepreneurs and public policies should be aimed at supporting them, with secretariats closer to them. “Municipalities should be better trained to face any difficult situation and provide a quick solution to their citizens. The bureaucracy slows down the help we can give to citizens,” she added.
Cabrera insisted that the current situation denoted greater bureaucracy to allocate emergency resources and thus face the needs of the people in a shabbier way. She also spoke of the absence of planning and, therefore, of a long-term sustainability of projects that can generate great impacts, in order to finally end poverty.
“We need an effective integration of various organizations committed to following up on projects to eliminate poverty. There are several focuses to point to planning and its follow-up, in the medium and long term. It’s going to take years, but we have to start now,” she said.
In Ciudad del Este, according to what Gulino shared, said municipality completely lacked updated data with reference to citizens and where they are located, so as to be able to send them any type of economic benefit, either through food or of any other type of benefits such as health.
This problem made it impossible to get help to get there more quickly. “It is a shame that total anarchy has been shown and that they have used this situation to benefit friends. Furthermore, there is a need for more investment and for the local government to be able to provide all the necessary infrastructures to move forward,” she said.