Video: Colombian Artists Sing in Solidarity With Farmers

Image from music video. Photo shared by Papa con Yuca on Facebook

Image from music video. Photo shared by Papa con Yuca on Facebook. Used with permission.

Colombian artists have come together to show their support for farmers who held a nation-wide strike to protest the government's agricultural policies.

Although protests stopped after the government and farmers established national negotiation tables in September, the farmers’ struggle for land rights continues.

As Global Voices contributor Robert Valencia explained in the World Policy blog, “the farmers complain that free-market reforms in Colombia have made their lives harder.”

In particular, they blame their current plight on the recently signed Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States and other similar agreements with countries like Canada in recent years.


Although Colombia’s economy has grown steadily over the last decade, rural households are three times less likely to generate the same income as average urban households. Most of the campesinos (Spanish for peasants) demand cheap fertilizers and other agrarian products, cheap credits from the Agrarian Bank, and the democratization of land ownership.

A group of artists under the name Papa con Yuca (“Potato with Yuca“) wrote a song about the farmers’ struggle and shared it on YouTube:

The blog Rythm & Roots wrote about the video and the Papa con Yuca initiative:

While the government recently came to an agreement with the farm leaders, the protests have brought the issue of land rights disputes back to the forefront. Though not gaining the same level of global media coverage as similar movements in Turkey and Brazil, the Colombian protests have stood out for their universality. The movement evolved from a farmers demonstration into a nationwide call for change. Much as the students stood next to the farmers on the picket lines, a group of musicians, artists, video producers and bloggers came together to add their voice to the multitudes with #YoQuieroPapaConYuca.

The post continues:

The project celebrates Colombia’s rich agricultural tradition and remains as a reminder that, though the protests are over for now, the pressure for change still exists. In the words of Yo Quiero Papa con Yuca:

No hay tiempo para cambiar mañana. Cambiemos hoy!!!

There is no time to change tomorrow, let’s change today!!!

On Twitter Colombians are sharing the video and voicing their solidarity with the farmers with the hashtag #yoquieropapaconyuca:

Because I prefer families starting to become self-sufficient rather than a bunch of transgenic packages on cupboards

The strike continues. Colombia resists. The farmer protests. The politician manipulates.

It means protesting about the issues affecting Colombian farmers peacefully.

For the dignity of the Colombian farmers and for our own dignity.

Art as a tool to rescue our local resources.

You can follow Papa con Yuca on Twitter [es] and Facebook [es].

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