P o p p i n g

Stop Thief! 

Those of us you who have had the good fortune of having your pocket picked whilst riding aboard the minibuses that comprise Xela’s world class urban transport system, will be delighted to know that the PNC (Policia Nacional Civil) have devised a new initiative  for combatting robbery on board urban transport. The strategy involves placing “operatives” at designated bus stops in order to deter thieves from taking advantage of the over-loaded buses by lifting valuables out of people’s bags and pockets whilst they’re too squeezed on all sides to notice. A winning strategy, no doubt, for a transport system in which the drivers stop whenever and wherever they want, instead of using “designated bus stops.”


F lo p p i n g

Costly Consultant

Mayor Jorge Barrientos, who has been at the helm of local politics in Xela for over 10 long years now, had another nail hammered into the coffin of his Mayorship with El Quetzalteco’s revelations that he had paid out a whopping Q406,000 in two years for just twelve legal consultations, to one lawyer. And, perhaps not surprisingly, it turns out that the lawyer in question is a good ol’ buddy of Barrientos’, whose relationship with him goes way back. Barrientos said that the criteria he used to select him for the contracts was “basically his experience” and denied accusations of simply giving out government contracts to his mates, and then overpaying them. Regardless, approval ratings of Barrientos’ mayorship are not exactly what one could call rosy: in a recent poll 76% of Quetzaltecos said that they thought Xela was now in a worse state than it was than before Barrientos took power all those years ago



Culture lovers in Xela will be a bit spoilt for choice on what to do in March as we have not one but two international festivals hitting our streets this month.

First up we have Quetzaltenango’s 6th International JazzFest, which will be held from  4th to the 22nd of March. There are 5 concerts in total, all to be held in the Municipal Theatre at 6.30pm. We can look forward to performance by Italian (Tue 11th), Spanish (Wed 19th), Mexican (Sat 22nd), and Guatemalan (Tues 4th & Fri 14th) musicians. Best of all, the concerts are all free. For the specific details of each of the concerts, check out Que Pasa Xela section.

Next up which we have the Puebla International Film Festival, which will be hitting Xela between the Thursday 13th and Saturday 15th of March. Over the three days there will be projections of over 20 independent films with a social, political and cultural focus from variety of different countries. There will also be talks by special guests and projections of short films made by some local talent right here in Quetzaltenango. As with the Jazz Festival, all of the films will be free and will be shown Casa Noj, Café R.E.D. and the Universidad Mesoamericana. Check out for the schedule.


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