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Guatemala This Month: Stuff That Actually Happened

By Elena Alvarado

A look back at the new and newsworthy during the month of May, 2010.

There’s no better way to kill your  mellow than by learning about what’s actually happening here in Guatemala.  This month is no exception.  Tune in as we do a Nuestro Diario-styled recap of what’s what in everyone’s favorite Central American Country.

Silverware is missing from a school in a canton of San Carlos Sija.  Thieves looking for computers accidentally broke into the kitchen instead of the computer lab and left students without a way to eat their daily snack.

Also in the “Generally Depressing Department” is news that a baby girl was abandoned in front of Hotel del Campo. Fortunately, the newborn was found fifteen minutes later and is currently being cared for in state custody.

The electric companies are under fire for 30% across the board rate hikes. As protests blocked roads throughout the country the Colom Administration stepped in, announcing that it would pay over Q300 Million in order to keep rates frozen at where they are through the next three months.  How much of that haul will actually make it to the electric company? Time will tell…

Sandra Torres, the wife of President Alvaro Colom, was fined for starting her presidential campaign early.  Within Guatemala it is illegal to campaign for president in a non-election year.  The controversy was that the fine was $100; that’s right, dollars and not Quetzales.  Opposition parties were indignant about the tiny fine while other political parties outside of the ruling coalition have been hit heavier.

Speaking of Sandra, the much-ballyhooed, always-controversial Mi Familia Progresa continues in its controversy. Alvaro Colom was harassed at an event in Totonicapan to find ways to end the dependency that critics say it provokes.  Nineth Montenegro, the opposition politician who received death threats for her inquiries into the program continues her investigation, and other opposition parties are declaring Mi Familia Progresa to be a straight-up political party in its own right. Seeking a respite from a negative news cycle, Torres resigned from the program, although rumors of behind-the-scenes influence linger.

Finally, Municipalidad won their 28th title against hometown Xelajú.

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