Febrero 19, 2018

What you need to know — Venezuela regional elections

15 Octubre 2017, 11:11 | Crisanna Felipe

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Henrique Capries, outgoing governor of Miranda, travelled country to support opposition unit candidates. Olivares is the opposition coalition candidate for Vargas governor.

According to the young violinist, Venezuela is ruled by a dictatorial regime and regional elections are a front that allows Maduro to pretend Venezuela is still a democratic country.

Sunday's elections were to be held in late 2016 and the National Electoral Council (CNE) called them for December 10 of this year. Maduro is scrambling to come up with the money, but time is running out to pay it off.

"The (Colombian) government is managing it as well as it can, but it's a challenge".

"The more obstacles they put up, the stronger we become", said coalition election coordinator Liliana Hernandez, urging supporters to turn out despite disillusionment.

In spite of the irregularities, the government insists the election will be free and fair. The Venezuelan government installed a separate, unconstitutional Constituent Assembly that holds supererogatory powers, technically above even those of the presidency. Others are upset at leaders they see as disorganized and unable to decide on a strategy to loosen Maduro's grip on power. Many have ditched the polarizing red shirts long associated with the socialist party, and some have avoided lavishing praise on Maduro.

Yesenia Vargas, a 32-year-old hotel maid and centrist, watched as Olivares snapped selfies with neighbors in the coastal state that shares her name.

"We're going to set an example for the world", said Carlos Ocariz.

Opposition march in Caracas.

The government is aware that the world will be watching.

National Assembly President Julio Borges plans to leave Venezuela over the weekend to attend an international parliamentary forum in St. Petersburg and meet with Russian lawmakers. This week, the National Electoral Council abruptly relocated some 200 voting stations.

The CNE has multiplied hatches.

Days before the rescheduled election, authorities announced they were relocating 203 voting centers, many in opposition strongholds.

Luisa Ortega Diaz, who fled Venezuela in August after being removed from office by a new, all-powerful constituent assembly, said on her website that the video shows Venezuela Odebrecht president Euzenando Prazeres de Azevedo speaking to Brazilian prosecutors.

Map of the different states that comprise Venezuela.

In a speech on the eve of Venezuela's regional elections, President Nicolas Maduro says the polls are a success for "revolutionary democracy".

Puente blamed the "socialist economic model" promoted by Maduro and his predecessor, the late Hugo Chavez. One of Chavez's brothers, Argenis, will defend the political inheritance in the region.

In an interview with AFP, some of the most recognized Venezuelans who spoke out during the wave of protests between April and July of this year expressed an uncertainty about the electoral process. The opposition gets a few daily minutes on private television and radio. He met with leaders including Germany's Angela Merkel, France's Emmanuel Macron and the U.K.'s Theresa May. "Indices of health and education are also falling".

"I prefer anyone to a functionary of Maduro's government".

However, the ruling socialists seem to be on the defensive for the first time. "But every time they have a new trick under the sleeve". "In 1998, when Chavez took power, the poverty rate was 45 percent of the population".

They are depending on an electorate reeling from recent losses and years of unrelenting recession.

Should that not prove to be enough, Venezuela will have to look to its biggest creditor: China.

He said governors-elect chosen in Sunday's vote would have to be "sworn-in and subordinate themselves" to the Assembly, on pain of dismissal.

Talks began in the Dominican Republic capital last month to try to agree an agenda for full negotiations aimed at resolving the country's economic crisis, but have made little progress since.

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