On December 8, PBI-Honduras tweeted:
“This week we accompanied ARCAH to the Public Ministry to file a complaint against the privatization of water and the construction of dams on the San José and Jacaleapa rivers, and the Jiniguare river, both in the department of Francisco Morazán.”
They also posted on Facebook:
“This week we accompanied ARCAH and the Water Board to the Public Ministry to file a complaint against the privatization of water by the company Hidalgo & Hidalgo and the construction of dams on the San José and Jacaleapa rivers, and the Jiniguare river in the municipality of Ojojona, both in the department of Francisco Morazán.
ARCAH members stated that the construction of both dams has serious effects on human rights, including the forced displacement of more than 200 people from a Lenca indigenous community in Ojojona, and the charge for water, which is a public resource.
We express our concern about the reports of privatization and contamination of water sources and we share the words of Pedro Arrojo-Agudo, Special Rapporteur on the human rights to drinking water and sanitation “you cannot set a value for water as it is done with other merchandise. Water belongs to everyone and is a public good. It is closely linked to all of our lives and livelihoods, and is an essential component of public health.”
Earlier in the week, ARCAH tweeted:
“We denounce Nasry Asfura for the dam project on the San José and Jacaleapa rivers in complicity with the transnational Hidalgo e Hidalgo. More than 120 pages will be delivered attached to the complaint. No to the Privatization of Water!”
Criterio.hn has also reported:
“The Honduran Community and Environmental Claims Alternative (ARCAH) filed a criminal complaint with the Public Ministry against the former mayor of the Honduran capital, Nasry Juan Asfura Zablah.
The organization accuses the former mayor of the capital of the alleged commission of the crimes of usurpation of functions, negotiations incompatible with the exercise of public functions, abuse of authority and violation of the duties of officials.
The coordinator of ARCAH, Christopher Castillo, told Criterio.hn that these actions would have occurred within the framework of the privatization of water in the Honduran capital, with the contracting of the transnational Hidalgo & Hidalgo for the construction of dams on the San José and Jacaleapa in the western zone of the Central District, and the Jiniguare river in the municipality of Ojojona.”
Two years ago, Radio Progreso reported:
“Environmental organizations from the Central District, Tegucigalpa and Comayagüela, denounce that the mayor of the capital, Nasry “Tito” Asfura, is advancing the water privatization process, by awarding a contract to Banco FICOHSA for the financial management of the income of the Treasury of the Unit Municipal Drinking Water and Sanitation (UMAPS).
According to information from the Commission for the Defense of the Communities of La Tigra, the Honduran Community and Environmental Claim Alternative (ARCAH) and the Honduran Environmental Law Institute (IDAMHO), over a period of 30 years, Banco FICOHSA it will receive 0.500% of the income, collected by the UMAPS, that is, 700 million lempiras per year.”
And in November 2019, Criterio.hn reported:
“A contract that stipulates a payment of more than 238 million lempiras for the cleaning of pipes in the aqueduct of the Honduran capital, signed the mayor of the Municipality of the Central District, Nasry Asfura, with the company Hidalgo & Hidalgo Honduras, SA de CV… According to the members of ARCAH, the contract in favor of the company Hidalgo & Hidalgo is the beginning of the process of privatization of drinking water and sanitary sewerage.”
PBI-Honduras has been formally accompanying ARCAH since September 2022.