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Mining consultation suspended in Colombia

Staff Writer | October 22, 2018
Colombia's Council of State suspended a popular consultation in the department of Cundinamarca on whether or not to approve oil exploitation in that central part of the country, whose capital is Bogota.
Colombia worker
LatAm   In Colombia there have been nine popular consultations
The referendum question, which was set for Sunday, sought to establish whether or not the inhabitants of the Cundinamarca municipality of San Bernardo approve the exploration, drilling and exploitation of hydrocarbons in their territory.

The Council of State acceded to a precautionary measure requested by a citizen who filed a lawsuit against a judicial decision which had given free rein to consultation.

In this regard, the high court mentioned that last week the Constitutional Court left without effect the ruling endorsing the realization of a similar consultation in the department of Meta, considering that extraction activities cannot be banned, and alleging that the subsoil is property of the State.

According to Colombian social leader Patricia Rodriguez, the Court's ruling is a step backwards because it ignores a mechanism of participation allowing the popular will to be expressed.

In Colombia there have been nine popular consultations in which the populations have rejected the development of mining projects in different municipalities of the departments of Tolima, Casanare, Meta, Quindio, Sucre, Cundinamarca and Santander.