On June 19, 2019 the Disappeared Persons Search Unit (UBPD) carried out at the Hotel Wyndham Bogotá the first public accountability hearing for the period 2018/2019. It’s worth recalling that this entity was created from the Final Agreement to end the armed conflict and build a stable and lasting peace, signed between the Colombian State and the FARC-EP. The UBPD’s purpose is to direct, coordinate and contribute to the humanitarian actions of searching and locating people considered missing in reason and on the occasion of the armed conflict.
Among the aspects that deserve to be highlighted, are that the UBPD is one of the first institutions of the Integral System of Truth Justice and Reparation that holds a public hearing on accountability over its management since it was born, a process that was accompanied by publication in its website of two management reports, corresponding to 2018 and another report updated to the first quarter of 2019.
The UBPD’s hearing of accountability was headed by its director, Mrs. Luz Marina Monzón and other officials of that entity and practically her intervention revolved around what is stated in the aforementioned management reports, addressing issues such as the participatory process of design of the structure, staff and UBPD nomenclature and progress of mission management, among other topics.
Among the negative aspects of the activity were the limited attendance of delegates from organizations of victims of missing persons from the regions, since in the case of Nariño, only one delegate from a Tumaco organization attended, considering that there in Nariño are several grassroots organizations in the department. they work forced disappearance.
Given that the UBPD has prioritized 10 cities in 10 departments of the country as a first step of the territorial deployment to carry out its competences and that the department of Nariño is not has been prioritized and this would depend on the department of Valle, a letter was sent to the UBPD in Bogotá on June 13, 2019, days before the accountability, the following concerns:
a) What is the action plan or intervention strategy for the department of Nariño from the central UBPD or the regional one of Valle or another department?
b) Is there a date scheduled for 2019 or later for the UBPD to start implementing its functions and competencies directly in the territory, including a link or territorial presence?
c) What strategies, activities or actions have been implemented with the information provided by family organizations, as a result of the process of case documentation and organizational strengthening?
d) ¿What plans, strategies, activities and/or actions are scheduled in the short and medium term and in what precise times as a result of the exchange of information and dialogues in the field that the UBPD held in the second half of 2018 with victim organizations, institutions and accompanying organizations?
However, that questionnaire was not answered or mentioned in the accountability, leaving several concerns among the organizations of relatives of victims of enforced disappearance.
In the same way, that same day of the accountability was carried out a meeting in Bogota between members of the Working Round-table on Forced Disappearance, space of the Coordination Colombia-Europe-United States, which Fundepaz is a member, with the Truth Commission in order to follow up the commitments and exchange information about the meeting for the truth of women searchers of missing people.