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News :: International
Boycott Grupo Pellas: CKD (CRI) causes to be investigated in Nicaragua’s west region
02 Nov 2009
Prestigious university to conduct study on CRI causes in Nicaragua’s west region.
Determining the specific cause of CKD (CRI) in Nicaragua’s west region through a scientific study is a common objective shared by Nicaragua Sugar Estates Limited (NSEL), a subsidiary of Grupo Pellas that owns the San Antonio sugar mill, and the Chichigalpa Association for Life (ASOCHIVIDA), the most important association of CRI patients in this Central American country. This is especially relevant in light of the defamation campaign by a group called ANAIRC against NSEL, which has been extended to the Flor de Caña brand and Grupo Pellas in general, with the aim of linking this disease, without any basis, to the sugarcane activities carried out in the San Antonio sugar mill, in order to obtain unjustified monetary compensation from this company.

NSEL and ASOCHIVIDA agreed to select Boston University, a well-known U.S. university with impeccable and indisputable credentials, for the research study, so that the results of the study are reliable and trustworthy for all parties.

This important decision is the result of a fluent dialogue between NSEL and ASOCHIVIDA over the last few months, which was convened by the World Bank’s Compliance Advisor and Ombudsman (CAO) and held under a Frame Agreement proposed by this institution.

Widespread Announcement in America and Europe

The selection of Boston University was preceded by an exhaustive analysis, in which ASOCHIVIDA and NSEL defined the criteria and principles that would govern the study, which led to the drafting of a document containing the terms of reference for the selection of the scientific team, which was widely disseminated in both Spanish and English.

An evaluation methodology was developed, with support from CAO, which was based on a criteria and scoring matrix. Later on, 9 public agencies, 22 universities in America and Europe and 5 private consulting firms were invited to submit proposals for the study.

When the date specified in the work timetable expired, nine proposals had been received, four from prestigious universities and five from private consulting firms. The review process began immediately thereafter, following the criteria and scoring matrix, which led to the selection of Boston University (BU).

Serious and Rigorous Study

Boston University is currently completing the first phase of the study, which will define the next steps for completing the study.

With the objective of carrying out this study in a rigorous manner, Boston University reviewed all documentation and literature on CRI available in Nicaragua and elsewhere.

In a fact-finding trip to Nicaragua, the BU team interviewed persons and organizations related to the CRI issue and later presented its findings and hypotheses to ASOCHIVIDA and NSEL, with the objective of preparing a preliminary proposal for the complete study. On this occasion, BU heard the concerns, criticisms and comments that were expressed by both organizations.

BU has inserted the comments of ASOCHIVIDA and NSEL in its report and has sent it to other experts in the United States and Nicaragua for their review.

All this work serves to illustrate what can be achieved for the benefit of a country’s population when the private enterprise and civil society organizations come together and endeavor to contribute, with a constructive spirit, to the solution of problems.

For the purpose of making known the truth about these issues, Nicaragua Sugar created a website titled “Nicaragua Sugar Estates Limited and Chronic Kidney Failure”. The address is

The official website of Nicaragua Sugar also contains abundant information about the company´s productive and social responsibility practices. The address is

Other links of interest:

This work is in the public domain
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