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By Andressa Santa Cruz, and free translation by Mahe Maia, for Collaborative Coverage of the Indigenous Women’s March

Hundreds of indigenous women occupied the building of the Special Secretariat of Indigenous Health (SESAI) today in Brasilia, calling for an end to the dismantling of indigenous health and the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre Wajãpi who declined to meet with the leaders and left the building under crowd boos. “Silvia does not represent the majority of indigenous women. We came here to talk and were not received. This shows the contradiction.”says Celia Xakriaba.

Since Silvia Nobre was designated by the current government in April, indigenous health policies have been weakened. The delay to transfer funds, the dismantling of the“More Doctors”Program, and the termination of the management team, impacted the villages since the first month, when indigenous across the country began to mobilize against the scrapping. In July, 115 indigenous camped in the SESAI building for two weeks and only left on the 22nd, after a meeting mediated by the Federal Prosecutor’s Office and Funai, in Brasilia, when the Ministry of Health and SESAI signed an Adjustment Agreement of Conduct (TAC) committing to accomplish the demands.

For Nyg Kaigang, from the south of the country, one of the objectives is the revitalization of the organ, “we will strive to ensure a specific health care based on the alignment of knowledge of traditional medicine, the way we think about the healing of our bodies”.

Check the moment of entry into the building:

Indigenous women occupy Sesai building demanding the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre. Photo: Douglas Freitas

Indigenous women occupy corridors and rooms of Sesai – Special Secretariat of Indigenous Health in Brasilia. Photo: Douglas Freitas / Collaborative Coverage

Indigenous women occupy Sesai building demanding the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre. Photo: Kamikia Kisedje / Collaborative Coverage

Indigenous women occupy corridors and rooms of Sesai – Special Secretariat of Indigenous Health in Brasilia. Photo: Lia Biachini / Collaborative Coverage

Indigenous women occupy Sesai building demanding the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre. Photo: Kamikia Kisedje / Collaborative Coverage

Indigenous women occupy Sesai building demanding the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre. Photo: Kamikia Kisedje / Collaborative Coverage

Indigenous women occupy Sesai building demanding the immediate departure of coordinator Silvia Nobre. Photo: Daniela Huberty / Collaborative Coverage