Nelson Merentes, the President of the Central Bank of Venezuela (“BCV”), seems to have a bit of a soft mutiny in the ranks.
A group from the bank’s technical staff has been leaking information to the media on the mismanagement of the institution, including the craziest bit of news this week: the one about the Central Bank printing presses being on overdrive to keep up with Venezuela’s gobsmacking inflation.
Last Saturday, La Patilla published a letter signed by “the Technical Officers (“Técnicos”) of the BCV,” where they expose the crappy conditions they have to endure in their workplace.
For example, they complain about their salaries being swallowed up by inflation:
…This year, with an estimated inflation of 140,0%, a 50% raise is not sufficient. This is destroying any incentives to work at an institution that used to be recognized for its excellence.
And these guys do have the numbers:
…Additionally, we are demoralized by the fact that numbers and relevant data of the national economy are not being published. Which, in fact, is a legal obligation of the BCV Board. Moreover, we have to endure insults from the directors, and consultants of the President and Vicepresident, who are ignorant and essentially illiterate in matters of economics and finance.
Statisticians are under the magnifying glass:
Their communications are being controlled, emails tampered with, and phones tapped.
Nepotism rules the day:
Relatives of PSUV leaders have been placed in key posts without having the required credentials, nor a career in the institution. An example of this: the sisters of Aristóbulo Istúriz and José Vielma Mora (prominent chavistas and governors affiliated to the ruling party).
And… Nelson Merentes:
..who manages a parallel budget for social aid and uses it for political means.
This is nothing new, of course. Anyone who has had regular contact with the public administration lately, knows that mid-level officials are more qualified than their bosses, and are currently humiliated and pissed off. What comes next is obvious: a witch hunt to go after these guys.
The thing is, if your salary is no better than what you would get selling cakes in the street or simply standing in line for hours, well, you might get to the point where you just don’t give a crap about your job anymore.Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.