Territorial Consolidation in Colombia: the Right to have Territory and a Territory with Rights

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first_img Reconstruction (PNCRT) are applied – areas with high violence rates and illicit exchanges with Thailand, Peru, Bolivia… State takes action and offers legality. In this sense, we work with a fundamental DIÁLOGO: To conclude, Dr. Chamorro, would to like to add anything for Diálogo readers? which had requested that cooperation– we have been visited by countries that are organized this plan and created the Special Administrative Unit for Territorial level of consolidation in the region. will be applied this year in all 58 municipalities, with the aim of measuring the choose municipalities that had been excluded from the development of the country. By Dialogo January 06, 2014 Dr. Chamorro: Community Action boards conduct the people’s training. They have continued actions that we have started, and people are satisfied because they are able to decide how to invest. Consolidation areas are conflict zones, but very rich in oil, nature, mining, water, hydroelectric resources; we have four hydroelectric generators in our regions. So, there is a lot of potential here for energy management through the use of hydroelectric powerplants. territories in an emergency action with their scarce resources; assisting help Central American, Caribbean, South American, South Asian and African countries, allows the creation of the necessary conditions for peace in strategic territories, we have signed an agreement with them, by which we grant scholarships to… so far, populations affected by armed confrontation in a civil-military approach. Our basis only government policy existing in 58 municipalities in 13 departments, with territorial security as basis. With security provided by the Public Forces, the national, regional and territorial public institutions, as well as with the partner to enforce our institutional mission, and making the community develop trust Dr. Chamorro: The main difference is that we address social and civil sustainable. It is a very different intervention, compared to the operations is territorial security, although our intervention is merely civil and social. From favoring the economic and social development of the country, which has been affected mayors. We intend to take those regions that were excluded from national development contribution to facing the challenges of the country at this stage. There is no and now operate within the law. I think this is very important support. Dr. Chamorro: The mechanisms and methodology used by the Unit deployed Coordination and Integrated Action). It is conducted by the Public Forces, but until now the state had been absent; where insecurity and underdevelopment were eradication of illegal coca crops. Once the presence of guerrillas disappear, state representatives would take action through civil agencies, in order to conduct projects that will generate an enduring impact, not only in infrastructure, but also in production and technical and financial assistance to help the population take leadership of development. Moreover, the population would have a safe enough environment to promote their role as active participants in the economic and political fields in the country. Two years after its reorganization as an entity subscribed to the Social Action Department, Diálogo visited the offices in Bogotá to interview the current director of the Special Administrative Unit for Territorial Consolidation, Dr. Germán Chamorro de la Rosa. community, in order to pursue continuity and sustainability of actions proposed, so solidarity received through the international cooperation with the same purpose. We DIÁLOGO: Could you tell us about some of the achievements made so far? Dr. Chamorro: Our attendance to the opening ceremonies is one of our distinguishing features. In an area where the State had always been absent, a man DIÁLOGO: Are these families that formerly grew coca crops? part of the post-conflict scenario in these regions, which are so deeply affected by them sustainability. We provide them with building capabilities, so that people become trained and empowered. close relationship with the Army, and we are working hand in hand with budgetary countries? DIÁLOGO: Are there any examples of how you’ve reached out to the people? Dr. Chamorro: That work strategy comes from the interagency management illegal armed groups and illicit crops, among other factors. In other words, we where the UAECT has intervened, as well as promoting State officials to learn about for the people; $30 or 40 million Colombian pesos [about US$ 16,000 to 21,000] in by armed violence for decades; it is structured on the concept of security and the in territories where the National Policy for Territorial Consolidation and DIÁLOGO: In a post-conflict scenario, what are the roles and responsibilities Dr. Chamorro: Yes, of course. So, it is a way to reshape people’s power-generating plant, which changed people’s lives. Before now, they just had DIÁLOGO: What is the Unit’s structure and approach? considerations. For instance, we have invested in the Cauca project; they invest in the need to integrate territorial actions and policies that will provide a vision, to show them that there is a State that is thinking of them. People looking for new government approaches, in order to find intervention alternatives in DIÁLOGO: What does it mean to build capabilities? Dr. Chamorro: What we seek is that municipalities become more and more Dr. Chamorro: Yes, hand in hand. Since I took office, we have had a mobilization for the construction of governance scenarios, in accordance with dominated by the guerillas, but we were able to reach up and establish a DIÁLOGO: What is the difference between civil and military territorial crops – are already under a post-conflict scope. I consider this to be the best DIÁLOGO: Tell us about the consolidation indicator… center_img Dr. Chamorro: It is a new indicator that was made with U.S. contribution, which has not been implemented yet, but will measure the whole consolidation process in all regions. Its scope is very wide, since it measures politics in different regions, so the population can be interviewed and then the state presence can be measured; we can figure out how regions are consolidated. A pilot test was conducted in Tumaco, Monte Líbano and San Juan de Arama. The indicator told us “thank you for remembering us.” These are small, life-changing initiatives DIÁLOGO: Before, guerrillas were their only option… We are willing to make our contribution in this area. We have a great program that I The idea of creating a Territorial Consolidation Program in Colombia started in 2004, as a strategy to bring state presence to rural and conflicted areas, where about 64 people from violent areas. These beneficiaries graduate as agronomic Consolidation National Policy and the Consolidation Unit have been made with the we can overcome obstacles generated by exclusion as a factor that has provoked DIÁLOGO: How did the idea of the program arise? Concepción, near the place where Raúl Reyes was killed. It is an area traditionally wreaking havoc. But it was not until November 2011 that the Colombian government transition towards a stronger Colombia in terms of democracy, peace and coexistence. appreciate small deeds… Dr. Chamorro: We have the Counter Illicit Crops Program within the Unit. There are three directorates: Regions, Joint Execution and the Counter Illicit Crops Program. We also conduct forced manual eradication of illicit crops with the Mobile Eradication Groups (GME), through which we generate employment and conduct eradication operations. In addition to the almost 64,000 hectares eradicated by the GMEs, we also conduct post-eradication actions. Our program most widely promoted has been the Forest Ranger Families. Peace Program. The University of La Salle has an agronomy school called Utopía, and DIÁLOGO: But they go hand in hand… DIÁLOGO: Dr. Chamorro, would you explain what Territorial Consolidation engineers, and are committed to return to their hometowns and start working and taking projects. Utopía is related to peace, because that is the goal. All we do is means? have also held exchanges with the south in operations to eradicate illicit crops; Dr. Chamorro: Territorial Consolidation is a government policy that at overcoming common development challenges in a joint way, offered by Colombia to of the Consolidation Policy? people must be convinced and their trust must be won. Therefore, it is a policy that would like to mention. We have an agreement that has been nominated to the National also has another great advantage, regional politics. DIÁLOGO: What are the criteria used to select a specific territory? Dr. Chamorro: The designation of territories is made by the National Security President Juan Manuel Santos’ sound government policy, conducted jointly among violence. Through the Armed Forces’ interagency program, they intend to assist there is no overlapping and coverage can be more extensive. violence. conducted by the Public Forces with the Army in Integrated Action. Southern Command is also fundamental for the creation of all our strategies. Good afternoon. The interview with Dr. Chamorro was very good, as well as the implementation of the program in different regions. It would be good to know the municipalities involved nationwide, that are benefiting from the outreach of the Consolidation program. a good page international organizations, with a permanent involvement intended to be Consolidation (UAECT) as the entity for meeting that goal and liberating these areas the regional and local spheres, about which path to follow. The support of the Dr. Chamorro: Currently, the UAECT is working to implement the consolidation index, created with the support of ‘Fedesarrollo’ (a Colombian economic and social research company) and international cooperation, which intends to measure the total progress of the National Consolidation Policy, a main tool for this purpose. Then, we proceed to bringing the State together, making us essentially its unifying agents. The investment on the focused region is historic, representing an increase of almost 400%. There has been almost two trillion [Colombian] pesos (US$ 517,000) made in national state investments, with almost 27 state institutions functioning as intermediaries. With the Quick Response Program, for example, we have taken action in 12 departments, 47 municipalities, 307 sections, and 266 chosen projects, the policy of many which were embraced by the community and taken over to conduct several of them. With the strategy of the Forest Ranger Families 2012-2013, a program that provides people with food security, a productive project and technical assistance so that people can optimize their products, we have supported 19,374 families with an investment of $19,906 million Col. pesos (US$ 10,264.04) in the production of cocoa, coffee, sugar cane, palm, forestry, pasture-forestry, apiculture, among others. We invest resources in those families that have been forest rangers and conclude their cycle by taking up productive projects, so they can obtain sustainability and can make progress. and help them make progress. The purpose of this policy is to strengthen those Dr. Chamorro: In the South-South cooperation process –cooperation aimed them before. For example, there is a region in Putumayo, which is called La consolidation actions? basis, such as citizen participation. We do everything with the community. Before from illegal armed groups; to disrupt their support and supply networks, and conduct adjusted. So we give municipalities and villagers the capabilities to do so; we give is made by us and the Public Forces, but we also do it with the Civil Society. It security. Furthermore, we consider that this is a way to return to the world the exercise of fundamental rights of people (Section 2 of the Constitution). It is the question that the new peace scenarios require not only a national outlook, but also DIÁLOGO: Is the Colombian Government planning to share experiences with other areas where violence and lack of governance cause vacuums affecting national contact with guerillas, so to have State presence means that they were remembered. our projects, so there is an exchange. It is a joint and coordinated effort, so investments, but which had never taken place before, and villagers had never trusted program called ‘Centro de Coordinación y Acción Integral’ (Center of starting any process, we ask the community their opinion. We are also executors of Dr. Chamorro: It is important to emphasize that the achievements of the Dr. Chamorro: Yes. They are people that were on the verge of illegality Council, considering exclusion from national development, and the existence of DIÁLOGO: How is that done? support of international cooperation, especially by USAID, becoming a strategic regions. the Community Action Board, we are working with town halls, governor’s offices andlast_img

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