Four months that the transport sector has not suffered extortion and eight months without motorists being the target of armed attacks by gangs, summarizes the effective results of the implementation of the exception regime, according to William Cáceres, president of Fecoatrans.
“The transport sector does not pay for that cancer that has been eating us up, which is extortion. We are satisfied with the courage and bravery of President Nayib Bukele and his decision to implement the regime in El Salvador. We thank him and applaud this measure » said Cáceres.
The representative of this sector added that: “not only do we agree with the exception regime, we are highly satisfied and we want it to be sustainable.”
Cáceres reiterated that the current government has taken wise measures to improve security in the country, contrary to previous governments that did not want to combat the problem affecting the country: the gangs and their actions.
The other member of the Transportation Board says that the carriers paid extortion between $12 and $34 million per year to prevent motorists from being murdered. However, in 2015 they murdered 95 workers.
“We had to pay, illegally deliver money with impunity so that they would not kill us. Anywhere they would get on and tell the driver ´take this phone to your boss and let him talk to us so we can agree on how much he is going to give us´, Every December they doubled the extorted amount because you had to give them a ´christmas bonus´”, added Cáceres.
The carriers reiterated the reduction in extortions by more than 95%, as well as the reduction in murders and attacks against bus drivers, minibus drivers, road controls, and the units themselves.
“This coincides with the measures that the Government has, such as the exception regime, we can attest to a reduction of close to 100% of what was required of us. As passenger transport businessmen, we recognize President Nayib Bukele’s effort in terms of security,” said Lucio Vásquez, spokesman for the carriers.
The businessman added that “in addition to being victims of the payment of extortion that has hit our economy so hard, the transport sector has been the victim of armed aggression by gang members with the murder of our drivers.”
Vásquez explained that since 2004 [during the ARENA and FMLN governments], 2,452 bus and minibus drivers on different routes have been murdered, including owners of different routes.
“Our sector forcefully asks President Bukele to maintain this measure [exception regime], which, far from causing us harm, has greatly benefited us,” said Vásquez, in the framework of a meeting with members of the National Board of Transportation.