November 2015        

Water for the people, not for corporate profits!

Paul Doran

All across the globe, facilitated by the World Bank, country after country has had its water privatised. Many large corporations use the vast resources of the African continent to pillage water and then sell if off in their European subsidiaries, and make huge profits. Nestlé is one of these companies. There are many more.
     This all has to do with the increase in private ownership of human resources that are essential to our everyday living. In Paris the water services were privatised, and the capitalist vultures made obscene amounts of profit, while services greatly depreciated because of massive under-investment. Then the Parisians took back their water services.
     Paris is not the only city that has renationalised its water. We are all aware how the struggle over the ownership of water can change governments in a revolutionary manner. Bolivia is a classic example, where the Cochabamba Water War in 2002, led by Eva Morales, was a public uprising against the privatisation of water services. Eventually Morales became president of the country, and he has since taken further initiatives in the renationalising of vital human resources.
     Since 2007, 170 municipalities in Germany have brought vital human resources back into public hands. Globally, at least a hundred cities have done the same with privatised water services over the past fifteen years, including dozens of municipalities in France—once seen as a growing focus for the privatisation of water.
     Some countries have used their laws to ensure that water is not privatised, the Netherlands being one example.
     If we can mobilise the people we can ensure that our public water services are kept in public ownership by enshrining in the Constitution a clause that prohibits private ownership. The Right2Water campaign has taken the initiative in giving people throughout this failed state a glimmer of hope that our voices will be heard. As communists we must lead by our example and assist in this uprising and show the gombeen-men and women in Dáil Éireann that we will not be broken.

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