On the banks of the Rio Leche is the Pomac Forest, ancestral home of the Sicán civilisation and builders of tens of truncated pyramids throughout the valley, many of which were brought to the attention of the world by Japanese archaeologist Izumi Shimada.
It is he again that brings to the world the news that one of the 3,000 year old structures is being systematically destroyed by people invading the protected area and planting crops on the pyramid itself.
Temporarily abandoning his teaching post at South Illinois University, he has rushed back to Chiclayo Peru to attempt to force local authorities to take action and protect their national heritage. He and the director of the Sicán Museum of Ferreñafe, Carlos Elera Arévalo, have demanded local police remove the new comers – a demand that has thus far been refused by Lambayeque police chief Víctor Ordinola who explained that everyone was busy preparing for Peru’s independence celebrations.
Like far too many Peruvians, the 300 invaders and Chief Víctor Ordinola, probably as corrupt as those under his command, takes no pride in their people’s history, and do not see the protection of the country’s archaeological or natural heritage as anything important. A sad fact that foreigners like Izumi Shimada are trying to change.