Bolivian Government Suspends Publicly Administered Carnaval Festivities

by Dragutin Lauric
(Dirección de Turismo, Cochabamba, Bolivia)

La Paz, 1 mar (ABI).- The Bolivian government has suspended all publicly administered Carnaval celebrations in solidarity to the hundreds of victims of landslides and floods throughout the country and will only allow the traditional "koa" offering to be held out of respect for tradition, reported Communications Minister Iván Canelas on Tuesday.

In a press conference at the Government Palace, Canelas stated this decision had been made by the President and his Cabinet of Ministers after evaluating the situations of thousands of families victimized by floods, who must receive priority assistance.

"All types of publicly administered Carnaval festivities which traditionally would have taken place on Friday have been suspended. People may make the traditional koa offering out of respect for tradition, and that's it," he explained.

He stated this decision had been made "due to the difficult times our brothers and sisters who are victims of floods, landslides and rivers that have overflowed their banks throughout the national territory are facing."

The Communications Minister explained that his stipulates only publicly administered festivities over which the government has authority, and does not affect Carnaval celebrations scheduled in country's various departments by means of the municipal and state governments such as the traditional Carnaval of Oruro which will be attended by thousands of foreigners, or the festivities in Santa Cruz and Tarija which also have great impact.

"We have not analyzed the situation of the Carnaval de Oruro because it is a very important folkloric expression and there are other elements which the population of Oruro must take into consideration."

According to the latest official data, more than 12,000 families are victims of floods and landslides. La Paz is going through a very dramatic moment after the "mega-landslide" that affected at least 5000 families and destroyed over 200 homes.

Source: ABI (Agencia Boliviana de Información)
Date: 2011-03-01 12:03:01

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