General strike was a damp squib
There were a few buses around, but there were not enough and many people decided to stay at home rather than face an impossible way to w...
There were a few buses around, but there were not enough and many people decided to stay at home rather than face an impossible way to work with no alternative form of transport.
Classes were suspended in the capital to allow professors and teachers to participate in the massive demonstration, which at the end became a sort of deflated affair, with only a few people turning up.
Nearly 100 members of the Only Construction Workers Union (Sindicato Unico de los Trabajadores de la Construcción) SUNTRACS disrupted the flow of traffic at Balboa Avenue, much to the dismay of motorists who already have to deal with problems caused by the construction of the Coastal Strip.
University and high schools students closed the Transistmica highway for nearly two hours, causing chaos for those who were trying to go to their jobs on Thursday morning.
Other groups went to Via España and the Ricardo J. Alfaro Avenue, but although they managed to interrupt the traffic, it was short-lived, because of the small number of participants.
Around 90 percent of the doctors at the Social Security hospitals and clinics went to work, although the National Medical Negotiation Commission (Comisión Médica Negociadora Nacional) COMENENAL said that it was supporting the strike.
The protestors got together at the May 5 Square clogging the area and all access towards Central Avenue and the Casco Viejo. They had a rally for a couple of hours shouting slogans and asking the government to do something to improve the standard of living of the people.
Union leaders, once they arrived to the National Assembly proceeded to give a petition document to the legislators asking for a reduction in the prices of the basic food basket and fuel, the dismissal of the Transmovil project, that will get rid off of the so called “diablos rojos”, the abolition of the only health system.
Meanwhile in the interior SUNTRACS members and teachers blocked part of the Pan-American Highway as part of the national protest. Similar rallies took place in Herrera, Chiriqui, Cocle and Veraguas.
It is calculated that around $14 million are lost every time there is a strike. Organizers said this is only the beginning, more strikes will follow.