The string of protests across the country today stem from many complaints, but all are aimed at the presidency of Laura Chinchilla.
Although the central government has promised to withdraw a legislative bill that would prohibit this kind of national strike that is planned for today, those affected are dubious.
For example, the Asociación de Profesores de Segunda Enseñanza, the politically active organization of high school teachers, voted unanimously to stage the strike and march today. That’s 700 affirmative votes, the organization said.
The organization will be joined by many others in what amounts to a repudiation of governmental policies for the last three years.
The more radical elements in the protests today are calling for the resignation of the president.
There is a long list of grievances, but the main reason for the protest today is that those with complaints see the president as weak. She bowed to group pressure when she suspended the concession for the San José-San Ramón highway. She said she would withdraw the bill against protests.
Protestors expect her to do likewise with their pet complaints. Casa Presidencial insiders say that Ms. Chinchilla is affected strongly by these public protests.
One major issue is the $1 billion concession for a container handling facility in Moín. Workers at the public docks there will be out in force today and probably will close down shipping.
The teachers will be gathering in front of Mall San Pedro this morning for the march to Casa Presidencial. That is conveniently located near the Universidad de Costa Rica where hundreds of students are expected to join the march. This is where much of the irresponsible radical elements can be found. In the last major protest, a student was found carrying firebombs and many others were detained for rowdy behavior.
Expats are best advised to remain at home today with their children. Public schools will be closed or nearly so, and private institutions might be hard to reach due to protests.
Marches and demonstrations are scheduled for nearly every major community n the country.