Penza Communists protested against gov policy
Penza, 8 February 2015. PenzaNews. Members and followers of the Communist Party of Russia held a protest against social and economic policy of the Penza authorities on the square by the former “Rodina” cinema on Sunday, February 8.
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According to one of the organizers of the activity, the public rally that lasted slightly more than an hour attracted about 1,500 people. However, based on observations of one of the PenzaNews reporters, the event gathered much less people – no more than a thousand.
The people on the square were holding Communist flags and posters saying: “Took milk away from children? Pinochet did that!” “Away with gov that bore the crisis,” “Hands off rural hospitals,” “Only the rich will survive,” “Transport lobby, leave City Duma,” “We demand ‘Children of War’ law,” “Penza is a poor city, and governor still in his seat!” “Bring back food pensions for our kids!” “Again we’re late for commuter trains!” and so forth.
The public rally opened with an address from the first secretary of the Penza CPRF city committee Dmitry Filyaev who thanked the audience for finding the time to come.
“Today, we must say our resounding No to raising prices and fares, cancellation of commuter trains, dilapidation of municipal property, such as municipal passenger transport,” Dmitry Filyaev urged.
Afterwards, he gave the microphone to a WWII veteran and train worker Nikolai Varlashin.
“I am glad to see so many people, but it is not enough. It’s high time we came to the streets – if not all people of Penza, then all those who go like that. Why? Before me I see slogans, and you can hold a speech on every single one. I hope the TV and footlickers here from the government and our governor will report what happened here,” the veteran said.
He was joined by deputy of the Russian State Duma, second secretary of the Penza CPRF city committee Vladimir Simagin.
“Here gathered people of various political views and ages with one demand: the authorities must not experiment on us,” he noted, reminding of how modernization turned out to be.
“Can’t come to the doctor – a monthly queue, can’t buy pills – the prices tripled. The enterprises bankrupt, the people on the streets, nobody needs anything. And this is modernization for the people, for us,” Vladimir Simagin said.
According to the deputy of the Penza City Duma from CPRF faction Oleg Shalyapin, “living becomes tougher with each day.”
“Instead of resolving the problems and getting out of the crisis, the authorities are trying to tie the knots on our necks tighter trying to resolve their own financial issues on our cost. The taxes are growing, the fines and food prices grew practically by 30% – on milk, bread, eggs. I’m going to the shop every day and see them crawling upwards. Today, a young family of four with two underage people cannot feed, with mortgages and loans of many kinds,” he added.
In his turn, Georgy Kamnev, deputy of the Legislative Assembly of the Penza region, first secretary of the CPRF regional committee, noted the media pay great attention to the external enemies of Russia, but forget about them within.
“And those who move money offshore? Only during the past year, there were 200 billion dollars, 12 trillion rubles now, moved offshore. It’s a budget of the whole country,” he said.
Georgy Kamnev also urged the Penza citizens to more actively take part in public rallies.
“I think those who stay at home, stay quiet, speak out about their disappointments on kitchens, are basically aiding [the destruction.] When I’m speaking at the Legislative Assembly [of the Penza region] on children of war, on capital repairs, I hear people saying how many take part in them – only a few hundreds. And others stay quiet, so everybody’s content. I’m glad so many people came here today. I believe this event will influence the authorities. If we organized such protests at least three or four times a year, I ensure you, we would already have our ‘Children of War’ law, and capital repairs would be at the very least like in St. Petersburg – 2.5 rubles. If you want real changes for the better, come to public rallies. We will get better lives only by demanding them,” the leader of the Penza Communists concluded.
In the end of the public rally, its members approved a resolution with demands for federal, regional and municipal authorities.
Так, в частности, на российском уровне коммунисты считают необходимым отменить взнос на капитальный ремонт жилья, не допустить дальнейшего роста цен на продукты питания, топливо и услуги ЖКХ.
In particular, the Communists demand to cancel capital repair payments in Russia, undertake measures to stop price growth on food, fuel and urban amenities.
Moreover, the gathered demanded to approve the “Children of War” law and an anti-crisis package that includes nationalization measures suggested by the CPRF, as well as setting minimum wage and pension levels at 10,000 rubles.
They also demanded that the Legislative Assembly of the Penza region reviews and approves the regional children of war support and reduce capital repair rate to the lowest possible volumes.
In their demands to the governor Vasily Bochkarev and the Penza regional government, the CPRF supporters demanded return commuter trains in original numbers and schedule as one of the main student, worker and dacha owner transports, and stop closing down healthcare institutions, hospital departments, morgues and beds in ambulatory locations.
According to the gathered, the Penza administration must prevent municipal city transport and mass layoff from occurring, and instead develop it, especially trolley buses; ensure dacha buses are working at the same prices, and bring back free milk and deductions for children in full.
Some also voiced demands to stop criminal proceedings against the Russian Duma deputy Vladimir Bessonov, and the Penza region Legislative Assembly deputy Andrei Zuev, members of the Communist Party.
The CPRF supporters said they are ready and willing to take part in unlimited acts of protests and more radical campaigns if they demands go unfulfilled.
The public rally concluded without incidents and arrests.