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Communiqué concerning the Constitutional Judgement

Press Release

On 25th January 2017, the Board of Directors of the Assembly of the Guarani People of Itika Guasu (the "APG IG") noted the publication on the website of the Plurinational Constitutional Court of the Judgement 0281/2016-S2 dated 23rd March 2016. This judgement was issued following consideration of a Popular Action granted on 4th February of 2016 by the Technical Judge of the Judgement Court of Entre Rios, Richar Ayza Salas.

The Constitutional Court Judgement 0281/2016-S2 confirms that of Judge Juez Ayza Salas which required "the immediate recognition in every banking and financial institution" of the signatures of Messrs. Hugo Arebayo Corimayo and Eugenio Catuire Rema, and ordered the Supervising Authority of the Financial System (Autoridad de Supervisión del Sistema Financiero - ASFI) to implement the said mandate.

Nevertheless, the Judgement of the Constitutional Court stated specifically that:

"Notwithstanding what was expressed, in order to avoid internal fissures within the Guarani Nation'Itika Guasu', it should be clarified that the defendants' argument that they were confirmed as the Board of the APG 'Itika Guasu' subsequent to the submission of the Popular Action, should be a matter of consideration within the community and this Court cannot pronounce on subsequent matters that are not part of the analysis of the problem raised in the said Popular Action which is based solely on the attached documentation which obviously predates the said Action...." [emphasis added]

As a result of the foregoing, this Board, in accordance with the powers granted to it pursuant to the uses and customs of the original indigenous jurisdiction of the TCO Itika Guasu, and also set out in the Organic Statute now in effect, states as follows:

1) The Constitutional Court Judgement recognised that it cannot resolve matters within the jurisdiction of the APG IG and which are subsequent to the judgment of Judge Richar Ayza Salas of 4th February 2016.

2) The above Statement of the Constitutional Court refers to the resolution of the Extraordinary General Assembly of Mburuvichas dated 9th April 2016 which, inter alia, elected a new Board in accordance with the uses and customs and of the APG IG Organic Statute.

3) Therefore, the resolutions adopted by and set out in the said Act of 9th April 2016 are legal and should be complied with.

4) As a consequence, the actions of the Board "established" by Mr Hugo Arebayo and others which predate 9th April 2016, ceased to have any effect, application, power or responsibility as of the said date, given that the said Assembly was convened in strict compliance with all formalities including notification to these individuals to attend the said Extraordinary General Assembly of Mburuvichas.

The foregoing statements are made as evidence of compliance with the Constitutional decision and without prejudice to the fact that the APG IG considers this decision, as well as that of Judge Ayza which it decision ratifies, as wrongful and contrary to the proper procedures of indigenous jurisdiction and those decisions taken in conformity with the same. In other words, Messrs Arebayo and Catuire never possessed a valid mandate pursuant to the indigenous jurisdiction. Nevertheless, pursuant to the judgement of the Second Chamber of the Constitutional Court, we declare and confirm that as of 9th April 2016 the artificial Board of Mr Hugo Arebayo came to an end.

5) As a consequence, the current Board of the APG IG comprises solely the following elected representatives:

  • Never Barrientos, President;
  • Florentino Zeballos Orquera, Vice President;
  • Zacarías Cuellar Oanda, Secretary Finance;
  • Benildo Vaca, Spokesperson Projects;
  • Ángela Tague Manuel, Spokesperson Health;
  • Gregorio Barrientos Camacho, Spokesperson Education, and
  • Fernando Cuellar Oanda, Spokesperson Production

6) The decisions of the Extraordinary General Assembly of Mburuvichas of 09 April 2016 were communicated to the National APG which recognised the elected and confirmed Board as the only authority within the jurisdiction pursuant to the uses and customs of the Guaraní Nation in the Plurinational State.

Therefore, the actions of the group led by Hugo Arebayo et al. are completely illegal within the indigenous jurisdiction and, as a result, in any other jurisdiction.

7) Having said all that, we should consider the Judgement of the Constitutional Court as an illegitimate interference, given the fact that it fails to recognise Original Indigenous Jurisdiction. The same consideration is applicable to the Judgement of Judge Richar Ayza Salas dated 4 February 2016, which clearly ignored not only indigenous jurisdiction but also numerous resolutions of our representative institutions.

8) The APG IG reserves all its lawful rights and remedies in respect of all and any damages and losses which have affected and continue to affect the lives of our peoples and the losses of food reserves, all of which will be promptly evaluated and in respect of which claims will be made against those directly and indirectly responsible for the same.

Guaye (Entre Ríos)
26 January 2017

Board of Directors of the APG IG

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small logoThis document has been published on 31Jan17 by the Equipo Nizkor and Derechos Human Rights. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.