In the building of the Municipality of Nicoya, documents are kept that represent fundamental rights of the people of the canton— the right to own property, to build a home, to receive a pension or financial assistance in cases of natural disasters, or to have permits to work as a businessperson.
The robbery that occurred on November 18 when thieves entered through an office window of the environmental management department by cutting the iron bars of the window is clear evidence of how fragile and vulnerable the building is to robberies.
During the robbery, the thieves took one of the department’s laptops, two Global Positioning System (GPS) devices, a laser beam measuring tool, two digital cameras and the copy of a key to an office vehicle.
We know that the municipality does not currently have enough funds available to invest in a security alarm system and to pay wages to several security guards, but we think they should rearrange the 2015 budget to include this category.
As a relative comparison, the municipalities could be likened to the Presidential House of each canton in that the documentation that is housed in them is of great interest to many and thereby attractive to wrongdoers.
According to municipal employees, all of the file cabinet drawers of several offices were found open and the papers were in disarray, clear evidence that the thieves were searching for important documents.
Stemming from the news of the theft in the Municipality, many speculated on social networks, on the Facebook pages of both The Voice of Guanacaste and of the mayor’s office, that the assault was some kind of inside job by the employees and leaders of the institution who wanted to hide information; however, The Voice of Guanacaste doesn’t have any evidence to support these rumors and gossip. We are honest and we cannot deny that such speculations exist in the canton, but as a responsible medium of communication, we will not publish any information without having something to back it up.
What we do believe, both for the safety of the inhabitants of Nicoya as well as of the Municipality itself, is that it is very important that the mayor’s office and the municipal council take measures in this regard. In addition, they should start to develop a digital system in order to transfer physical documents to computerized databases.
Currently, many of the documents that the municipality keeps are only archived physically. In other words, if this paper or document gets lost or stolen, there is no backup, and this paper could be yours, mine or everyone’s.