In times of global pandemic with a virus spreading around, an outbreak of resistance appears in the extreme south of Porto Alegre: the Okupa Pandemia. We have been occupying a snack bar, abandoned since 2007 (as far as we know), on the shores of the Guaíba, in the Lami neighborhood.
Moved by the immediate need for housing and the desire to confront the system that increasingly intensifies its control and repression in a subtle way, we decided to make the move even with few people willing to live in the place... Aware of the difficulties that implies, we have counted on the support of a few people since the occupation, but who cannot be physically present all the time.
The arrival on the site (on sunday May 25th 2020) was calm, given the conditions of easy access and without obstacles. There were no gates, chains, locks etc.!!
After almost three days of apparent disinterest, the owner appeared accompanied by a goon claiming to be a sergeant (Wednesday, 27) ... The first contact gave the impression that they were buyers and were already negotiating the property, giving an ultimatum to leave. However, we stayed.
Then they returned in their true social figures, trying to intimidate and threaten us and, given the refusal to leave, calling the repressive apparatus of the State. The thugs arrived, with blood in their eyes and the typical desire to break something or someone. With the intervention of two neighbors, we managed to avoid the stick and were given a deadline of one week to leave. The first match won, we went on squatting the space.
In the meantime, we look for strategies to try to remain squatting and not being kicked out. And it would seem that we won another battle, our initial deadline is over, and the owner is wondering what to do... It seems Okupa Pandemia may have a longer life...
We want to resist and give them a hard time as much as possible. For that it is essential to be surrounded by compas and solidarity. Anyone is welcome to come to support us!