The Minister of National Security, Nilda Garré, will speak this afternoon on the reallocation of the federal police (PFA) from subte stations. The measure to remove police forces is in accordance with the imminent handover of the subte from the federal to the city government.
The decision to remove the PFA from city stations has led to a call for a general strike by the transport union (UTA) which will commence tomorrow morning for an indefinite period of time. Five subte lines will consequently be out of service tomorrow.
The director of UTA, Roberto Fernández, has confirmed that the strike will take place. He added that, over and above the “lack of police security in the stations”, the subte remains in poor condition.
“The underground system could explode at any time since its substructure is obsolete and there is no evidence of either maintenance nor investment.”
He seized the opportunity to appeal to authorities to “adopt the necessary steps as a matter of urgency in order to avoid greater evils.”
More than 200 troops, who currently control the city’s six subway lines, will cease to operate in accordance with the arrangements of Buenos Aires Security Minister Guillermo Montenegro.
Garré has confirmed that the Metropolitan Police force has the “personnel required to carry out the transferred powers and responsibilities.” She also stated that the federal forces will have a role to play in the program Train Alert.
The Association of Subway Workers and Premetro (AGTSyP) have confirmed that they will not join in the strike.
“We not adhere to the strike called by the UTA,” stated the director, Roberto Pianelli. “We will comply with the operating regulations accordingly.”
“What may be affected is the operation of Premetro,” he added, “which has to operate with personnel from the federal police.” “There may be no ticket office, since it takes police to prevent theft.”
“We will strike if the replacement is not working, but the case in hand has nothing to do with that”, Pianelli concluded.
The vice president of the Buenos Aires government, María Eugenia Vidal, denounced the strike on Radio Mitre. She also took the opportunity to point out that the service was not yet in the city’s hands and that the subte remained the responsibility of the national government.