Las tres estaciones del Semanario VOZ

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El principal medio de comunicación del Partido Comunista en Colombia, es uno de los actores que se ha sumado al Pacto por la Memoria. Conozca la historia de este periódico, especializado en cubrir las diferentes manifestaciones sociales del país y los diversos procesos de paz en Colombia, que pronto se podrá consultar en el Archivo Virtual de los Derechos Humanos y Memoria Histórica

Juan Camilo Gallego Castro – CNMH
@jcamilogallego

La dictadura de Gustavo Rojas Pinilla terminó el 10 de mayo de 1957. Con su salida fueron derogados todos sus decretos, entre ellos el que hacía ilegal el Partido Comunista. Dos meses después, el 20 de julio de 1957, el Partido Comunista de Colombia puso en circulación la primera edición del periódico Voz de la Democracia. Esto respondía a una razón fundamental: necesitaban un medio de comunicación abierto y legal.

Carlos Lozano, hoy director del Semanario Voz, recuerda que “no existía la persecución sistemática, pero el Partido tampoco estaba avalado legalmente para poder actuar. Por eso se utilizó la figura del periódico, para crear ese espacio político para trabajar”.

Entonces abrieron oficinas, nombraron un director y un equipo de redacción. Sin embargo en 1964, en el segundo gobierno del Frente Nacional, con Guillermo León Valencia en la presidencia, se rumoraban los ataques a Marquetalia y las llamadas “repúblicas independientes” en el marco del Plan Lazo, diseñado por los Estados Unidos para combatir el comunismo en América Latina.

Como Voz de la Democracia dio a conocer el Plan Lazo e hizo la denuncia de los ataques a las regiones agrarias el gobierno decretó su cierre. No obstante, en el seno del Partido Comunista ya habían previsto esa posibilidad.

La segunda estación

Una semana después del cierre, en las calles circuló un “nuevo” periódico: ‘La Voz Proletaria’. Cambiaron el nombre y el director, pero se trataba del mismo periódico con un diseño similar. En esta segunda estación el periódico se nutrió de la lucha social. Según su director, cubrieron desde la huelga más pequeña hasta la más notoria.

Este no sería el único cambio de nombre que tendría este medio de comunicación, en los años ochenta Manuel Cepeda, el director del periódico, propuso un debate en el interior del Partido. “Bueno —dijo— Voz Proletaria ya cumplió su ciclo, el país ha cambiado, es más urbano. El nombre de Voz Proletaria limita para llegar a otros sectores que no son obreros”. Así fue como a partir de 1983 que pasó a llamarse Semanario Voz. Tres años después Manuel Cepeda se retiró de la dirección y su lugar lo ocupó Carlos Lozano.

“Nunca me imaginé que fuera a ser director del periódico por tantos años. No se me pasó por la cabeza. Fue muy sorpresivo”, dice Lozano. Esa época coincidió con la aparición de la Unión Patriótica. Fue tanta su influencia que en las regiones aparecieron Voz Urabá, Voz de Antioquia, Voz del Valle, Voz de la Costa Caribe.

La tercera estación

Lo que se vino fue más difícil. Primero, la crisis del socialismo. La Unión Soviética no volvió a enviar el papel para el periódico, lo que supuso la quiebra de la imprenta del partido; segundo, perdieron el edificio en el que funcionaban; y tercero, el genocidio de la Unión Patriótica, que también cobró la vida de Manuel Cepeda, ex director de Voz, el 9 de agosto de 1994.

Las más de 55 mil páginas en 2.798 ediciones que componen el archivo del Semanario Voz entre 1957 y 2017, de la que hoy la Dirección de Archivo de los Derechos Humanos del Centro Nacional de Memoria Histórica (CNMH), tiene una copia junto a las caricaturas publicadas por Calarcá, son una muestra no solo del cubrimiento de los diálogos de paz, en el que se especializó Voz, sino del genocidio de la Unión Patriótica.

En la actualidad el Semanario Voz circula cada semana con 30 mil ejemplares y lo escriben cinco periodistas. En los últimos años se dedicaron a cubrir el proceso de paz. ¿Ahora qué sigue? Esto dice Carlos Lozano: “Tenemos que mirar otros desafíos. Uno de ellos es la unidad de la izquierda. Para nosotros el acuerdo de paz no solo es el fin del conflicto, sino que también abre la posibilidad de trabajar por cambios más significativos. Hay que sumar, esa es una de las batallas”.

Carlos Lozano, director del Semanario Voz – Foto: Isabel Valdés, CNMH.

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