August 11, 2018

To the people of Mexico

To the movements of electricity users in resistance

To the media

We are users of electric power who have been organizing for eight years to gain the rights of our families and all Mexicans affected by the high fees charged by the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE), the company that has presented us the dilemma of either paying light or eating, paying light or providing our children a decent education, paying light or living a decent life.

Along with thousands of comrades in struggle, since 2010 we have stood up the neoliberal policies of presidents Felipe Calderón and Enrique Peña Nieto. We have resisted from below the policy of dispossession, privatization, higher cost of living, and an ever more precarious existence. We have resisted the imposition of digital meters that transform a monthly statement into a usurious banking operation. We have not stopped for a single day protesting against a modernization project that seeks to privatize the electricity sector and intends to divest us of the possibility of guaranteeing light in our homes. We defend ourselves against the abuses of the personnel of the CFE and the police, we have fought the judicial processes against our women comrades. We have not stopped fighting against the Energy Reform that dismantles and privatizes an electrical industry that is fruit of the work and sacrifice of several generations of Mexicans.

That is why we are on a payer’s strike and we will continue until our demands are resolved.

We are aware that our resistance is not isolated. It was born of the well-known user resistance in the southeast and north regions of the country. Before the CFE entered Mexico’s central region, we already had news of the resistance against abuses and outrageous fees. Many of these fight in organizations that for many years have been resisting despite the most difficult conditions. Many others struggle with their families although without being organized into any larger movement. We extend recognition to all these manners of resisting, organized or not, in the hope that we soon come together in the same space because we are all part of the same movement.

We are the NATIONAL COORDINATING COMMITTEE OF ELECTRICITY USERS IN RESISTANCE (CNUR). We are domestic workers, workers, students, and town dwellers. We are a movement independent of the state, of political parties, and of companies. We respect the diversity of political positions, because these years of struggle have matured us, now able to define ourselves free of any tutelage, democratically, and in our diversity.

Our resistance to these abusive fees for electric power has led us to bring the following demands to past bad presidents Felipe Calderón Hinojosa and Enrique Peña Nieto.


- Clean slate and start afresh. Because the CFE excessive fees are unpayable. They do not reflect what we actually consume. Moreover, in the central region of the country this company is not legally recognized so its collections are illegal.

- Fair rate. Because all Mexicans must have access to electric power as a basic necessity, therefore it is a public service and not a commodity at the whim of market prices.

- Make ratify access to electricity as a human right in the Constitution. To guarantee future generations, our rights must be protected by the highest law in the land so as to avoid being deprived of electricity, absolutely necessary to dignified life.

- Put an end to this process of criminalization and prosecution that has begun against users who resist around the country.

- Repeal Article 185 from the Criminal Code which for years now has criminalized our struggle, as well as others that oppose megaprojects.

Instead of being sensitive to this social issue and its origin, neoliberal governments have used all forms of repression and deception. They sign accords with different movements that they do not fulfill, but rather sign agreements merely to buy time to wear down and repress the resistances of the users. But they have not succeeded! Despite their thwarting, the resistance broadens and matures politically.

We declare that,

1. Growing social discontent has manifested itself through the most diverse forms in recent years against neoliberal policies. Large youth and people’s demonstrations are rising across the country. Because neoliberalism has further impoverished the nation, its policies were resoundingly defeated in the presidential elections July 1st; the aspirations of a broad majority of society for profound change was strongly expressed. Mobilization and constant organization of the people will achieve justice for our demands and defeat those who throw up blocks to improvement.

2. This country’s oligarchy, organized in their chambers of commerce, use their mass media to call us “defaulters.” As if it were a whim to not pay outrageous rates and “crazed” receipts for hundreds of dollars! Mounted up high on their privileges, they cannot see the obvious: that it is impossible to both pay for electricity and have a decent life, and that millions of users confront this profound social dilemma. We are not defaulters! We are dignified users in resistance!

3. The political panorama now has changed and, therefore, the conditions of struggle with it. As users of electricity, we firmly place ourselves this broad unrest for profound transformation to achieve social justice, obtaining rights, and substantial improvement in our people’s living conditions. The public debate is open and we wish to participate in ending the rapacious, extractive neoliberal regime, by constructing an egalitarian, ecologically sustainable society free of discrimination against women and sexual dissidence, and likewise creating conditions for a dignified life for the elderly.

4. We welcome the incoming president’s commitment to guarantee he will wipe the slate clean for users in resistance in his home state of Tabasco. We demand this right be extended to everyone in the country in the same situation.

We know that to move forward we will have to fight the forces that have sold out the country all these decades and will do everything they can to prevent change. To those who privatized the electricity and water industries, to those who repressed social movements and “disappeared” the 43 students in Ayotzinapa, to those who deny university education to two hundred thousand students year after year, to those who pay workers miserable wages, to those who steal millions of public funds with total impunity, we say we will fight to recover what belongs to the people, to build a country with justice and freedom!

Only the united, organized people will win!

Ever onward to victory!


Speeches the same day by Héctor Valdez backing the Statement

(Publishers Note found: )