Skip to content

Indigenous leaders make Ceremonies for Atitlan Lake

February 17, 2010

By: Ligia María

Translated from Spanish; original version below. If the link below does not work, is because the news service is making some changes. It will be working shortly.

Versión original en Español, abajo

Sololá, Guatemala. December 18th, 2009.Mayan elders of different communities of Sololá had a gathering asking to Imox to rescue this beautiful lake, which is terribly damaged.

Indigenous organizations and authorities of Sololá prayed to their gods for Atitlan’s lake salvation, and even though they appreciate what some scientists are doing, they ask to the government some sort of “plan” to rescue Atitlan lake from the bacterium that is threatening it.

Mayan elders of different communities were together in a big fire ceremony asking to the Lake’s spirit (nahual) guide for the Scientifics in their struggle rescuing Atitlan Lake.

Miguel Tuiy, Domingo Toc, Esperanza Salazar and Mariano Guarcax invoked to the four cardinal points and to the wind to take away the bad and bring back the lake’s color.

“For us is a sacred Lake, source of life, giving us water for our plants, it feed us, is a source of money for lots of families. We are here to ask to Ajaw (God) to help us” said Domingo Toc, a Mayan elder.

The Indigenous’ defender and coordinator, Ricardo Suluguí said: “The disrespect to nahaul of water (Imox) is the main reason of contamination for this sacred place. To resolve the problem, spirituality and science have to work together. This is all we have to rescue this treasure”.

Specific actions are urgent

Indigenous leaders and rural organizations were complaining at the ceremony for the non action taken by government and lack of fulfillment of the rescue plan presented on November 4th in Sololá for Vice-president Rafael Espada and environment minister, Luis Ferraté. This plan has 32 specific actions to make.

After forty nine days nothing has been done, that is why neighbors, businessman and communities of Sololá are worried.

Juan Queché, indigenous mayor of Panajachel is concerned for not having an execution plan and spoke up: “time is going fast and nothing is done,” he declared.

In the first test made on October 30th the bacterium presented like seaweed, was covering 5 per cent of the water. Last test made on December 17th, the bacterium was covering only 0.18 per cent of the total area.

Experts declare that the difference between dates does not mean the microorganism has disappeared, depending of the temperature the microorganism goes deep, hides or shows up. If there is higher temperature there is more microorganism and vice versa, that is why it does not look like the problem is still there.


Spanish version.  Versión en Español.


Sololá, Guatemala 18 de Diciembre de 2009. Sacerdotes  mayas de distintas comunidades de Sololá celebraron una ceremonia para pedir a Imox por la salvación de este bello lago, el cual se encuentra bastante afectado.

Puede encontrar esta noticia en español  en el siguiente link. Si el link no funciona es porque la agencia de noticias está haciendo algunos cambios. Estará listo en dos semanas.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: