On December 6, 2020, elections will be held in Venezuela to elect the members of the new national parliament. The elections, aimed at electing the National Assembly for the period 2021-2026, represent the 25th electoral process in 20 years of the Revolution, in a democracy that is permanently renewing all its powers through the popular vote.
In Venezuela, sovereignty resides solely in the people, who exercise it through their right to vote. Thus, the December 6 elections represent the reaffirmation of the democratic vocation of the Venezuelan people and their deep conviction that the differences that do exist can be addressed and resolved through peaceful and political means, within the framework of the Constitution.
The elections will be held in a context of a country besieged by the criminal blockade imposed by the government of the United States, and by permanent threats of intervention by the main military power of the world.
Since the Venezuelan people elected Comandante Hugo Chávez as President of the Republic on December 6, 1998, the United States developed a strategic doctrine that has dominated relations between the two countries ever since: the doctrine of “regime change”, which has led to coups d’état, financing of the terrorist opposition, attempts at assassination of the President and the imposition of a parallel government, and most recently – last May -, the launching of a mercenary invasion.
This ideology establishes that the United States will not allow the consolidation in Venezuela of a political project governed by the principles of independence, self-determination, sovereignty and equality among States.
Overthrowing the legitimate government of Venezuela, destroying their democratic model, annihilating the forces leading the revolutionary process and taking control of the country is, in short, the plan that guides the conduct of the United States towards Venezuela.
All of these actions constitute a massive violation of the human rights of the Venezuelan people and a flagrant transgression of international law. In spite of this, the people maintain their strongest democratic and peaceful will to continue being the protagonists of their own present and future, exercising their right to vote on December 6.
The electoral system in place for these elections is exactly the same that has attributed resounding victories to both Chavismo and the opposition in previous electoral processes. The December 2015 parliamentary elections, in which the opposition won a large majority, were held with the same rules and protocols in place for 2020. Their results were immediately recognized by the President of the Republic, Nicolás Maduro, and all the political forces that support the Bolivarian Government.
The solidity of the Venezuelan electoral system does not depend on international recognition or on the participation of the most extremist factors of the opposition. With an automated system that has been refined and strengthened during the Bolivarian Revolution, the results issued by the National Electoral Council (CNE) will always be a faithful reflection of the free will of Venezuelan voters.
On this occasion, two innovations have been incorporated that will allow for greater proportionality and diversity in the new National Assembly. On the one hand, in response to population growth, the positions to be elected have been expanded from 165 to 277 deputies. Likewise, the number of deputies to be elected by the proportional method was increased from 30% to 52%, which guarantees a greater presence in parliament of deputies from minority parties.
This election will be subjected to 16 audits, which are conducted before, during and after the vote, in order to validate each of the key processes of the electoral system, which allows certifying its quality and invulnerability. In these audits, technicians of the CNE participate directly, together with representatives of all the political parties, national and international experts, as well as the citizens themselves in the audit that is carried out on Election Day.
The strength of the electoral system is also an expression of the adequacy and modernization of the electoral infrastructure. To guarantee transparency, reliability and efficiency in the electoral processes, the CNE renews its technological park and presents on this occasion a new voting machine to be used in the elections of next December 6. It is a machine designed in Venezuela by Venezuelan technicians, the result of the accumulated experience of the Electoral Power throughout 20 years, and especially since 2004, when it started with the automated vote. Regarding the innovations brought by this technological tool, it is a simple system, of easy experience for the voters, and the entire voting act will be in accordance with the biosecurity protocols required for the prevention of Covid-19.
Today, after a long process in which all the conditions for the elections were agreed upon with broad sectors of the democratic opposition, the floodgates have been opened for a great electoral process with the broadest guarantees ever given in the country. Thus, more than 90% of the political organizations enrolled with the National Electoral Council registered to participate, for a total of 107 political parties -98 of them opposition parties- and more than 14,000 candidates, who are competing for one of the 277 parliamentary seats.
As usual and consistent with transparency, the CNE has invited hundreds of electoral experts, authorities from electoral bodies in other countries, academics, journalists and politicians of the most diverse tendencies, to accompany and participate in the electoral event of December 6. Likewise, in compliance with the agreements reached between Chavismo and the opposition, the Government invited the UN, the European Union and the African Union, among many other organizations, to participate as observers, which confirms the openness of Venezuelan society, political parties and international actors, to have the most absolute certainty that the electoral results will be a faithful reflection of the Venezuelan people’s vote.
The electoral pre-campaign has already begun. Venezuela is heading to a historic process for the renewal of its parliament. The new National Assembly will be born from the will and conscience of the people, expressed through the vote.
For the Venezuelan people, it is fundamental to overcome and replace the current National Assembly, an institution from which the opposition majority dedicated itself to seek unconstitutional ways for the ousting of the President of the Republic; to demand from powerful world powers economic blockade and foreign military intervention against the country; to sequestrate national assets abroad; to attempt the usurpation of the legitimate constitutional institutions and authorities of Venezuela, as well as to support and lead insurrectional adventures and political violence of which thousands of Venezuelan families have been victims.
For all these reasons, it is fundamental to recover the democratic character of the National Assembly. This very important State Institution cannot continue to be a Trojan horse of the United States inside Venezuela.
The December 6 election is the constitutional opportunity to renew and re-establish the full functioning of one of the pillars of the State, the National Assembly. Parliament is called to be once again the centre of political debate among the most diverse forces that reflect the plurality of the country, having the Constitution and respect for national sovereignty as its foundation.
The new National Assembly will have the strategic mission of contributing to the normalization of the institutional life of the country, to be a key part of political stability and to establish the legal basis so that Venezuela is in a better position to face the huge challenges posed by the blockade, opening the doors for economic recovery and the protection of the rights of the people, violated by international aggression and its internal accomplices.
The Venezuelan people have resisted with dignity and firmness the imperial aggression of the blockade and the so-called sanctions, which have even been intensified during the Covid-19 pandemic. In the face of adversity the people maintain its spirit of hope, struggle and combat, and renews its peaceful and democratic vocation. For this reason, on December 6th they will go out to fulfil the constitutional mandate to elect a new parliament.
We invite the world to spread the truth about Venezuela. In the face of so much manipulation, in the face of so many attacks, in the face of so many lies, lets tell the truth of a noble people that loves peace and freedom, and that have historically demonstrated their courage in defending the Homeland.
That the defense of the 6D parliamentary elections in Venezuela in peace and in full freedom, without international interference or tutelage, become the defense of the political rights of all free citizens of the world.
1. Analysis: Legislative Elections in Venezuela by Carlos Ron
On December 6 we will carry out legislative elections in accordance with our Constitution. As of January 5, 2021, a new National Assembly must be installed. These will be the 25th elections in
21 years to be held in Venezuela. Two key battles are being waged in this moment for Venezuela:
- It is an important battle to recover the Legislative Power that in 2015 fell in to the hands of the Washington-supported right-wing and was used to attempt, through legislative means, to overthrow the Executive Power and effectively not recognize the rest of the authorities in the country;
- It is also an important battle to counteract the strategy that the United States has been promoting across the world with the idea that there are two governments and that the deputy Juan Guiadó is authorized by law and the current National Assembly to be Interim President. The United States, its allies and its agents, have attempted by all possible methods to stop these elections from happening because they know that on January 5, 2021, Guaidó ceases to be a deputy, the National Assembly, where his political forces controlled the elected body, ceases to exist and all of the arguments that they had to sustain this parallel government will be nullified. If they continue with their narrative, it will be with complete lack of recognition of our laws and institutions. This would also not recognize the rules that they themselves created in the statute of Transition, where it is made clear in Article 13 that the period of the National Assembly cannot go longer than January 5,
What are the Venezuelan people really voting for on December 6?
- They are voting to redirect the action of the Venezuelan opposition towards democratic and political channels instead of open acts of destabilization and unconstitutionalsolutions;
- They are also voting against a group of politicians that took the legislative power and have used it as a political platform to demand all types of aggression from sanctions to military interventions and to appropriate the country’s resources that areoverseas;
- The people vote for a new conformation of the National Assembly, which more closely reflects the reality of the country. The revolutionary forces have put forth diverse candidates, some well-known, as well as many candidates from the youth and allied
Proposals from people’s movements for the National Assembly:
- Law for Family Protection: This law aims to protect the family, ensure its harmony and happiness and the fulfillment of its potential and rights. It also seeks to ensure that families enjoy a life free of violence especially against children and
- Law for the Right to Recreation: This law aims to guarantee the right that the Venezuelan family has, especially the youth, to recreation. It affirms the responsibility that all bodies of governments have to create artistic, cultural, sports-focused public policies that allow this right to be
- Law for the Future for Sustainable Development and Protection of the Environment: This law has the objective to strengthen the new model of ecological and sustainable development of the future, establishing guidelines for the protection of the environment and of natural resources, as well as the duties and responsibilities of the society, State and private sector in guaranteeing the future of this and the next generations. Recycling will have a key role in this
- Entrepreneurship Law: This law has the objective to encourage the support and accompaniment to new productive, scientific and technological initiatives that are the base of a sustainable and innovative economy. It will establish the bases of the public policies and necessary incentives so that entrepreneurship is a fundamental part of Venezuela Productiva (ProductiveVenezuela).
- Law of Digital Economy: This law has the objective to encourage the most diverse forms of digital economic exchange that ensures that all rights, duties and necessary incentives are guaranteed to both the users and the
- Law of Care Systems: This law has the objective to establish the policies, mechanisms and conditions for the protection and attention to people in a situation of dependency that require special and specialized care. It also seeks to guarantee the rights and social security of the people that are care
- Water Law: This law will be adapted to the new context of the world and the country, with all of the norms that are applicable to the water reserves, as well as access to water as a right and an essential public service for
- Gas law: This law has the objective to create a framework of rights, duties and conditions to ensure the provision of gas service to the whole population, as well as the economic and social organizationalframework to serve as the basis for the permanent improvement of this
- Law for the Simplification and Transparency of the functioning of Public Administration: This law has the objective to promote the transformation of Public Administration on all levels, putting emphasis on the rights of the citizens and in the continuous improvement of the conditions of assistance with procedures. It would establish norms for the simplification of these and also the guidelines to make all of the phases of public administration
- Law against Violence and Cruel Treatment of Animals: This law has the objective to establish the rights of animals, as well as the duties of the population with regards to the care and protection of animals. The law will also establish a set of fines and sanctions to encourage the respect of these
- Law of Communal Cities: This law has the objective to establish the communes as cities where they are able to materialize projects for all who live there, in sustainable harmony with the environment and with full capitalization of productive potential. Cities for life and for the people wherein people’s organizations take a central role and show to the world that a humane and sustainable city based in solidarity is
- Law of Communal Parliament: This law has the objective to establish the norms for the development and functioning of the parliament of the communes, its competencies, rights and duties to the commune and to the State, in addition to the mechanism to integrate them, as well as the participation of organized people in all their
This new Assembly will be more diverse – it has candidacies from a different sector of the opposition that ranges from social democracy to Christian democracy and Pentecostal sectors, but all of them committed to rejecting sanctions and invasions. There is even a smaller sector that traditionally identifies with the Left but decided to present their own candidates. There are 107 parties participating in the elections, of which 98 are from the opposition, and there are a total of 14,000 candidates for the 277 seats.
The system is the same that in the past was used when the opposition won all of its seats in 2015. Additionally, members of the opposition parties insisted that with these elections they feel that there are even more guarantees. The system will go through 16 audits. The bases of the more extremist parties have even revealed to their leaders that some will participate in the process. Here there will be different international overseers in technical terms and of political accompaniment to show that:
- From here, the possibility exists to truly engage in a national dialogue. Venezuela needs the legislative body to leave the conflict aside to allow a true dialogue to goforward;
- Some of you will be coming here, and all of you will be accompanying this process. The world alreadyknows that the Venezuelan electoral system is one of the most modern and advanced in the world. This will be a smaller aspect of the questioning. The principal interrogation will be whether Venezuela had the conditions to carry out the elections;
- Our challenge is to show the world that people are excited. The campaign has reflected all of the political diversity of the country and these elections are in an effort to work for peace and politics above any other solution. We are fighting against the no recognition of the process and against the attempts that can arise to continue to legitimize a fascist, coup-supporting, thieving and ghost
4. Juan Guaidó, Trump and the European Union, by Francisco Dominguez
Before the 23 of January 2019, Juan Guaidó was an unknown entity. He acquired notoriety due to a series of coincidences … and decisions made in Washington. The practice of annually rotating the National Assembly’s presidency among the parties holding the majority meant that in 2019-2020 it was the turn of the extreme right-wing party, Voluntad Popular (VP); unfortunately, all VP’s key figures (Leopoldo López, Freddy Guevara) were under arrest or were fugitives of the law for their participation in seditious and violent acts against the Venezuelan state. Guaidó happened to be the next in line making him rightfully president of the National Assembly. In a bold move he (and Washington) decided he would proclaim himself “interim president” of Venezuela. His self-proclamation that was to catapult him into the world’s media limelight was part of Washington’s “regime change” strategy.
Mr. Guaidó’s ‘interim presidency’ lacks constitutional or legal bases and his self-proclamation’ occurred in a public square in Caracas, in front of a small group of supporters. Guaidó has never been elected president of Venezuela nor has he ever stood as a presidential candidate for any election. His claim that his “interim presidency’ rests on Venezuelan Constitution’s Art 2 33 is thoroughly false; the article reads: The President of the Republic shall become permanently unavailable to serve by reason of any of the following events: death; resignation; removal from office by decision of the Supreme Tribunal of Justice; permanent physical or mental disability certified by a medical board designated by the Supreme Tribunal of Justice with the approval of the National Assembly; abandonment of his position, duly declared by the National Assembly; and recall by popular vote. President Maduro is alive, has not resigned, has not been removed from office, is not physically or mentally incapacitated, has not abandoned the Presidency, and has not been recalled by popular vote. Additionally, the notion of ‘interim presidency’ does not exist in the Venezuelan Constitution. This ought to have been sufficient for European governments to never extend recognition, whatever they may think of President Maduro’s government.
The recognition of Juan Guaidó as “interim president” of Venezuela by European governments violates all basic principles informing political legitimacy, and should have never been awarded. The decision to award recognition is the result of political blackmail. Pedro Sánchez (26/01/2019) announced on the EU’s behalf that unless presidential elections, preferably without President Maduro as a candidate, were held within 8 days, the European Union would have to recognise Guaidó. On this shaky, arrogant, and calculating basis EU governments proceeded to toe Trump’s line of erecting Mr Guaidó to the fictional position of “president” of Venezuela.
Ever since Jan-Feb 2019, Mr Guaidó has behaved abysmally.
In February 2019, Guaidó in complicity with the Colombian government, narco-paramilitaries, and the US government (Mike Pompeo), on the pretence of a concert at the Colombian border, tried to violently push ‘humanitarian aid’ into Venezuela by military means. The plan was sinister; it was naturally expected that Venezuela would oppose the illegal and violent action and it was intended to charge President Maduro with refusing to allow aid to his people, followed by serious military confrontation.
Guaidó made it to the concert through Colombian territory where he received military protection from the Los Rastrojos criminal narco-paramilitary gang, who Guaidó took several selfies with. The intensely anti-Chavista UK newspaper, The Guardian (14/09/2019) wrote: “Juan Guaidó, the Venezuelan politician fighting to topple Nicolás Maduro, is facing awkward questions about his relationship with organised crime after the publication of compromising photographs showing him with two Colombian paramilitaries.” It was revealed later that one truck was set on fire, by Guaidó supporters. The media had blamed President Maduro. The episode did not merit comment from European governments, was their silence forgiveness?
On 30th April 2019, Juan Guaidó led probably the most televised coup d’état in the history of Latin America. One wonders which feature of this illegal, unconstitutional and armed action to violently overthrow President Maduro’s government – with incalculable consequences in human lives, -are the European governments not prepared to condemn? The scandalously bland statement by the EU and European Parliament is inconsistent with the intense harshness and speed with which they are prepared to condemn the Maduro government. Euronews reported ‘Guaidó defiant after failed coup attempt.”
Mr Guaidó was complicit to the UK right wing government in setting up a secret ‘Unit for the Reconstruction of Venezuela”. Records show that Guaidó and his entourage were prepared to offer oil and infrastructure contracts, and the restructuring of Venezuela’s debt, whilst his ‘ambassador’ to the UK, Vanessa Neumann, was reportedly prepared to surrender the Essequibo region in exchange for political support from the UK government. In short, Guaidó and his ‘team’ were ready to betray their nation on almost everything.
In May 2020 Guaidó contracted US-led mercenaries to launch an attack (‘Operation Gedeon’) against his own nation and to assassinate President Maduro and high officials in the government, followed – as stated in the contract – by a Pinochet-style purge aimed at the thorough eradication of Chavismo from Venezuela. Here again, the European governments either pretended the event did not happen or they confined themselves to lame and soft generalities, a far cry from their unforgiving criticism of the Maduro government.
Guaidó has deliberately complicated the Venezuelan government’s access to 31 tons of gold in custody in the custody of the Bank of England on the ‘merits’ of his ‘interim presidency’. The gold is to be used in the purchase of food, medicine and vital health inputs in order to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, through the UN Development Programme (UNDP). The Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV)’s appeal led the UK Appeals Court to annul a first verdict giving Guaidó access to the gold.
It is preposterous to imagine Guaidó having the capacity or the will to make good use of those resources. In Venezuela he has no control whatsoever, and given his obsession with imposing more sanctions on his own country, it is doubtful that he would spend money on the people of Venezuela. His lack of interest in paying the legal costs of the case (US$529,000) confirms he is neither interested in complying with the law and is not desperate to obtain the gold to help the people of Venezuela.
Guaidó has made repeated calls to the military to wage a coup d’état to topple President Maduro, and has repeatedly (more than 20 times) organised a “final march” on Miraflores, Venezuela’s Presidential Palace, seeking to create a pretext for violent confrontations. In line with US and EU policy, he has repeatedly opposed the right of Venezuelans to vote in elections. The EU has at best commented on these flagrant undemocratic and seditious acts with deafening silence and at worst welcome them with enthusiastic approval.
Guaidó is not only a willing accomplice in aiding the US to illegally confiscate his own nation’s assets but he and his closest associates are also deeply involved in corruption. Through the protection of Trump, Guaidó and Co have been lining their pockets with hundreds of millions of US dollars resulting from the US illegal confiscation of Venezuelan assets ‘legalised’ by the “interim president”. On 24 January 2019 the US State Department gave US$20 million to the ‘new government’; a 2015 Citibank loan to Venezuela was unilaterally settled in advance and the saved difference (US$340 million) – with US government support – was given to Guaidó; in May 2020 OFAC gave Guaidó’s “government” US$80 million for the “liberation” of Venezuela; USAID gave Guaidó US$128 million to assist Venezuela migrants who have not seen one penny; and Guaidó was instrumental in Trump’s illegal confiscation of Venezuela state, US-based, gasoline distribution company CITGO, valued in about US$8,000 million. Venezuela has incurred US$11,000 million in losses due to the freezing assets. There is more but you get the picture. Europe has been the continent of colonial pillage so, is this ‘historic affinity’ maybe the reason they recognise Guaidó?
There is no justification whatsoever for European governments to continue their untenable policy of recognising Juan Guaidó as ‘interim president’ of Venezuela when in reality, he is totally bereft of any legal, political, or constitutional legitimacy for his self-proclamation, and especially since his thoroughly undemocratic and criminal credentials have been irrefutably proved. An unconditional withdrawal of his recognition is long overdue.
- Venezuela’s opposition won a majority to the National Assembly in 2015 for the period 2015-2020; Henry Ramos Allup representing the Acción Democrática party, became the Assembly’s president in 2016-17;Julio Borges of Primero Justicia during 2017-18; and Omar Barbosa from Un Nuevo Tiempo for 2018-19; all elected as president by a majority vote of the
- Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic ofVenezuela
- Detailed information from article in Venezuelan pollster,H interlaces (in Spanish) about many of Guaidó corruption endeavours: