SANDINISTAS CALL FOR NATIONWIDE STRIKES
MANAGUA, NICARAGUA — The Sandinista Front and its labor union called for civil disobedience, strikes, marches, and sabotage to protest the government's economic measures and plans to fire thousands of workers. In what could be the prelude to a third general strike against the government of President Violeta Chamorro, the National Workers Front urged people on Monday to stop paying their utility bills and announced the formation of brigades to disconnect water and electricity lines.
In remarks published in El Nuevo Diario, the pro-Sandinista newspaper, the labor union also said that some labor actions would begin today, followed next Monday by a larger ``national day of protest against hunger and unemployment.'' The government announced last Friday that 15,000 more workers of government ministries and state-run companies would be laid off in October. It also announced that another 10,000 members of the Sandinista army would be discharged by the end of this year.
Unemployment has risen to more than 34 percent and skyrocketing prices on consumer goods have added to hardships. Mrs. Chamorro has asked the people to endure the measures as she struggles to carry out Western-style reforms aimed at boosting the sagging economy.