Thursday, April 25, 2024

Cuba cancels May Day parade

Date:

Share post:

Havana – Cuba’s communist government has cancelled Monday’s traditional May Day parade because of acute fuel shortages.

Every year hundreds of thousands of people are bussed in from across the island to fill Havana’s Revolution Square on International Workers’ Day.

It is the first time since the 1959 revolution that the celebrations have been cancelled for economic reasons.

In recent weeks long queues have formed at petrol stations, with drivers often waiting for days.

Earlier this month, President Miguel Diaz-Canel said Cuba was only receiving two-thirds of the fuel it needs, adding that suppliers were failing to fulfil contractual obligations.

While Cuba has access to low-grade crude, the US-sanctioned island lacks the facilities to process it.

Deliveries of higher quality crude from Venezuela, Cuba’s largest provider of fuel, have dropped by 50 per cent in recent years.

Analysts say Venezuela is experiencing severe problems itself and finds it increasingly difficult to subsidise its socialist ally.

The shortages have added to daily pressures faced by Cubans. According to Spain’s El Pais newspaper, a typical monthly salary is $150-200 (£120-160), while a litre of cooking oil costs $30.

The government insists that its state-driven socialist model is best for the country and blames the problems on longstanding US sanctions.

Cuban authorities have traditionally mobilised huge resources to ensure the success of the May Day parade, transporting workers en masse to Havana.

Before this year, the event had only ever been cancelled in 2020 and 2021, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local events are expected to go ahead instead, with people marching on foot.

Ulises Guilarte de Nacimiento, the head of the Workers’ Cuba’s main trade union said on Tuesday such acts would highlight “the obstacles to the development programmes due to the ironclad economic blockade”. (BBC)

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related articles

Body found near Culpepper

There are reports reaching The Nation that a body was found in the area of Culpepper, St Philip. Initial...

Time to focus on national issues

ARE THE DEMS united, or are they fragmented? The reason I ask though is because shortly after Member of...

Dominica High Court overturns ban on same-sex relations

Dominica's High Court has overturned a ban on consensual same-sex relations in the Caribbean island nation. The court ruled...

Usain Bolt named ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 Ambassador

ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The International Cricket Council (ICC) have announced Olympic legend Usain Bolt as an ambassador...