Newsletter for Colombia Calling patreon supporters for March 2020
What a month it has been! For those of us living here in Colombia, sometimes one feels that it would be more convenient to believe that the social and political situation here were fictional rather than reality.
There are two landmark moments in the past week or so which need to be shared with you as they are unlikely to have been covered in the international media, but make for some pretty unpleasant reading:
1. Alicia Arango, the new Minister for the Interior on Tuesday made a comparison between the numbers of social leaders killed and the number of people killed whilst being robbed of their cellphones. I for one do not feel comfortable with reasoning of this type. It seems a little coarse and totally inappropriate.
2. President Duque has had an abhorrent fortnight, even by his standards, and one feels that he may not yet have hit rock bottom. His disapproval rating sits at 71%, he picked an unnecessary and unwinnable fight with the UN, there are accusations that his presidential victory is flawed due to vote-buying, his political patron has been linked to cocaine trafficking out of Bogotá’s international airport, one of his ambassadors has been found to have three cocaine laboratories on a family-owned finca and on it goes – read A week in the life of Ivan Duque, President of Colombia parts 1 and 2 at richardmccoll.com
Back to Colombia Calling
The new website – and a huge thanks goes out to all of you out there who have sponsored us and continue to do so – is almost ready. With your help I have been able to purchase the domain, set up a designer and some hosting. I’ll let you know as soon as the page goes live, but the domain is www.colombiacalling.co
We’ve had a great month of interviews, with the likes of Mikolombia on politics, Jeff Brown on travel, Eric Tabone on Colombian weddings and Breedco discussing medicinal cannabis produced in Colombia.
However, it’s this latest episode which I would like to discuss further. In the light of events in the past couple of days which have all but revealed that the people behind PharmaCielo, a Colombia-based cannabis operator have been cooking the books, perhaps I was led down the garden path in providing some promotion for Breedco, a company based in Cali and involved in the same business.
I would like to make it very clear that I have no interest, financial nor via acquaintances, in Breedco, my curiosity is piqued only by this “new industry,” which appeared to me to be one in which Colombia could position herself as a world-leader. Honestly, my knowledge of the medicinal cannabis industry is so slim that part of the reason I agreed to having the directives of Breedco on the podcast, was to learn more about the business and in turn share some of the information with you, the listeners.
So, despite some of the negative feedback received for having interviewed and therefore provided publicity for Breedco, I feel that Episode 314 has been timely and relevant.
That’s all for this month’s newsletter, rest assured we have some great interviews in the pipeline, the Colombia expert for Crisis Group, an NGO in Cartagena and many more.
Kind regards from Bogotá