Visa for Lying

Your daily briefing for Friday, May 6th, 2016. Translated by Javier Liendo.

This Thursday, Delcy Rodríguez said that the Secretariat of the Organization of American States is plotting the foreign intervention of Venezuela by applying the Democratic Charter, backed by an operation “of a mediatic, financial, economic and social nature to subvert the constitutional and democratic order,” a circumstance she considers both dire and laughable. She claims to have proof that Luis Almagro plays a “non-impartiality” role, aligning his agenda with those of the Venezuelan opposition and the U.S. government, a country that knows about the shortages we’re suffering because it has promoted scarcity. However, she said that Venezuela imports enough food to feed three nations.

Convinced that “every media war is followed by international intervention,” she denied that we’re going through a humanitarian crisis or a financial collapse; she said that the majority of the Venezuelan opposition engages in illicit fighting tactics and that the National Assembly has been dedicated to violate the Constitution. In the end, she lost her Cuban manner and, wildly gesticulating, she reminded us why she’ll never be a true foreign minister even though she holds that office.


Delcy advanced the task assigned to the PSUV deputies’ commission who went to the Prosecutor’s Office -and met with the General Prosecutor herself- requesting the opening of an investigation on the MUD deputies “for betraying the will of the people when they elected them into office in the National Assembly.“ Tania Díaz explains that appealing to international institutions to denounce the collapse we’re experiencing, is the same as requesting foreign intervention -Marines and all-, crimes punished by the Constitution with 25 to 30 years in prison.

An expensive lawsuit

Unclear about prison time or the compensation he’s after, Diosdado Cabello filed a lawsuit against The Wall Street Journal for libel, for an article they published on May 2015, titled “Venezuelan Officials Suspected of Turning Country into Global Cocaine Hub.” According to Diosdado, the article contains false, libelous accusations that have caused damage to his reputation and “substantial economic damages.” The lawsuit’s document praises him for being a good man, a dedicated husband, a distinguished politician and a high ranking member of the Armed Forces. The lawsuit was filed before the District Court for the Southern District of New York (16-cv-03346). Knowing who’s behind it is enough, but the question remains: Will he pay for it with his deputy salary?

Linked strategies

That salary will surely pay for harassment, though. The PSUV started the good old practice of intimidating vulnerable citizens, ordering their spokespeople to state the need for releasing any information regarding those who signed for the Referendum to the public, to cross reference with public institution payrolls, convinced that public employees should be militants. This Thursday, almost the same spokespeople have obsessively claimed that time constraints “won’t allow” calling for a referendum this year. Add the fact that Tibisay Lucena didn’t meet with the MUD, and we’ll soon discover the technical foundation for this political decision: demoralizing those who aren’t afraid, blocking democratic paths and collapsing all that remains.

Tell us how long you’re going to take

Deputy Juan Guaidó, vice-president of Parliament’s Interior Policy Committee went to the National Electoral Council to demand deadlines for the recall referendum: “Tibisay Lucena (…) show some political responsibility, we demand a clear itinerary for the referendum (…) We’re not asking for favors, we’re demanding our constitutional right,” taking the opportunity to remind Diosdado that he hasn’t reported to work for 12 weeks now.

In the National Assembly

On January this year, a special committee was formed to study the situation of universities, and this Thursday they presented the results of the information collected with representatives of various sectors from 24 universities. Minister Jorge Arreaza, responsible for that area, never made it to the meetings.

The report proves that universities -like signatories now- have been severely harassed. The low political control the government has on them explains this method of forcing their collapse by denying them resources, damaging every possible area of their activities: wages and salaries, collective bargaining agreements, scholarships, maintenance, supplies, student services, security and of course, research development and compensations. I take full responsibility for saying this: only a President that’s ignorant of the impact and implications of academia in a nation’s development can be the protagonist of a crime of this nature.

Unexpected evaluation

The Supreme Tribunal’s Constitutional Chamber declared the unconstitutionality of the Partial Reform of the Organic Law of the Supreme Tribunal of Justice, approved by the National Assembly last April 7. Allegedly the law didn’t fulfill the prior requirement of legislative initiative corresponding, particularly and exclusively, to the Republic’s highest tribunal, nor were the justices consulted in the drafting process, a mandatory and relevant step.

A poor sense of ridicule

Nicolás is a mock-up. This Thursday night he proved it as he pretended -again- to activate the pharmaceutical engine, saying that new controlled prices will be announced in the next few days. If he mentioned that so many times, the adjustment must be significant. He signed an agreement with Iran to “incorporate” two million units and 350 types of medicines and he gave the order for public companies to establish a new distribution and marketing system, while he talked about antibiotics and other products that are missing in Venezuela. About the products that pharmacies don’t have. Meanwhile, our everyday devaluation shows that the Simadi exchange rate closed at Bs. 399.87 per dollar. Todo bello.


Naky Soto

Naky gets called Naibet at home and at the bank. She coordinates training programs for an NGO. She collects moments and turns them into words. She has more stories than freckles.