Nicaraguan DJ Exiled in the US Longs for a New Beginning

Keny Vargas

Keny Vargas is looking for job opportunities to help his family and continue contributing to the civic struggle against the Ortega dictatorship

By 100% Noticias

HAVANA TIMES – Keny Vargas is on the eve of his 41st birthday and life does not stop surprising him at every stage. He is one of the 222 political prisoners released and exiled to the United States on February 9th by the Ortega regime. In full exile he makes his way and works to recover his life.

Vargas remembers that one day he established himself as a professional DJ and entertainer with his own company. Suddenly he appeared in the 2018 protests demanding justice for the Nicaraguans murdered by the Ortega regime, from there he jumped to be part of civil organizations.

“I had my own company “Vargas Production” and I took to the streets on April 18, 2018, since then I have not stopped denouncing the government for its murders and imprisonments. On September 14, 2018, I suffered my first kidnapping and they sent me to the “La Modelo” prison where I was held for a year, three months and 15 days,” narrated Vargas, who recounts his ordeal in great detail.

Although he was released on December 30, 2019, Keny Vargas came out determined to continue in the civic struggle against the dictatorship from hiding, but a police contingent identified the safe house where he was staying.

“On August 13, 2020, they took me out of the house, then they sent me to the Granada prison system, without visitors, they denied me any parcels, many restrictions, they did not even allow me to receive food or hygiene supplies and even getting shoes was an odyssey,” he says.

This is how he lived his last two and a half years in prison in the Granada Penitentiary System.

The next thing was to find himself on a plane, headed for the United States, a country where he arrived with nothing to wear or eat, and he also arrived marked by the traumas of torture and prison.

“Thanks first to God and to the organizations that have supported us. I have been able to get ahead and thanks to you who they have not been able to silence. We have power in our voice and here I am still fighting for a free Nicaragua,” declared Keny on the 100% Superchats program, broadcast every Friday by 100% NOTICIAS.

Currently, Keny lives in Los Angeles; he obtained a work permit, and his plans are to start working. He dreams of earning money and helping the political prisoners who remained in Nicaragua. he also dreams of reuniting with his family.

“My goals are to continue with my profession, but if I can’t do that here, I’ll get ahead anyway, because I am honest, honorable and hard-working,” says Vargas.

“Thank God and the government of President Joe Biden, most of us 222 have work permits, we can move legally in any state we want, I have a social security number,” says the released prisoner, who also received support from organizations who work with victims of torture.

His job search has already begun. We found him in a supermarket applying for a position. “I will continue looking for opportunities because my family needs me,” he explained.

He is referring to his elderly mother who is 70 years old, his children and his partner, who still remain in Nicaragua. “My mother is an old woman, but those people don’t respect anything,” warns Keny.

In addition, he fears for his brothers, who are persecuted by the police for political reasons.

“Family reunification has been difficult for us, we have our hopes on God, it is difficult but not impossible,” says Vargas, who is already trying to invest in his work tools to continue his DJ career in the United States.

Read more from Nicaragua here on Havana Times