Venezuelan science and tech workers demand pay hikes

    19 de julio de 2018

    Caracas, Jul 19 (efe-epa).- Dozens of employees of Venezuela's Ministry of Higher Education, Science, and Technology on Thursday gathered outside of the ministry headquarters in Caracas demanding pay increases.

    The scientists had also demonstrated on Wednesday, partially blocking a roadway in the outskirts of the capital and holding signs protesting their "misery wages," as well as warning that science "has no future."

    Scores of state telephone company CANTV employees also joined the protest.

    "CANTV is in a state of emergency," one of the protesting employees, Roberto Molina, told Reporters.

    CANTV - which provides fixed-line and mobile telephone service, as well as Internet connection to more than two thirds of the country's users - has received an increasingly large number of complaints regarding malfunctions in its system over the past few months.

    The demonstration is in line with a series of protests by several of the country's labor unions over the past four weeks throughout Venezuela.

    Media outlets informed about manifestations by health care workers in as many as five Caracas public hospitals, as well as in four states, in addition to the "health march" conducted by nurses and doctors in Maracay, capital of Aragua state, near the capital.

    Other demonstrations occurred in the coastal state of Vargas, sparked by food shortages, while retirees staged a protest for the second day in a row in response to banks' refusal to pay their pensions in cash.