Telling the Siekopai Story with Jimmy Piaguaje Part 3
Are the extraction companies still working throughout Covid?
'Yes, everything has been put on hold within indigenous communities for the pandemic, education for example, but the extraction of oil and wood in the Amazon has never stopped.
The roads that service the oil industry pass right by the Siekopai communities, bringing people in from the outside. We believe that it was them who brought covid to our people.
We learned that covid was spreading within the big cities, but we never thought that our people would be the first to suffer. So we see how the oil companies affect us.'
In this 10 part series BCC had the privilege to interview Jimmy Piaguaje, co-founder of our 2021 chosen charity SËRA Foundation. A youth leader of the Secoya Remolino community and Siekopai Nationality Jimmy lives in the Ecuadorian Amazon surrounded by oil exploitation and oil-palm monoculture plantations. In response to this existential threat, Jimmy and his community have developed innovative projects to document ancestral shamanic knowledge and created environmental youth workshops to ensure this wisdom is passed on from their elders. Here we listen to their story and join them in the next phase of their journey in protecting their lands and future.