The goal is delay

Your daily briefing for Friday, May 13, 2016. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Without mentioning the probability of a recall referendum this year, CNE official Socorro Hernández said that they’re working on the system for scanning, transcription and verification of the forms and collected signatures to activate the referendum process. Everything will be slower because the opposition handed over more signatures than necessary and the CNE won’t comply with the law, they won’t verify the 1% signatures in five days.

As a kind of balance, she said what we already know, adding that scanning and transcription will allow the creation of the database of voters who will verify their signatures, that they won’t publish signatory data, but checking whether there was identity theft or not will be possible through a system similar to that of the institution’s web page. CNE’s proposed schedule is as follows:

– On May 13, forms will be transported.

– From May 16 to May 20, forms will be scanned.

– From May 17 to June 1, voter data will be introduced.

– From May 18 to June 2, signatures will be verified.

Official Luis Emilio Rondón demanded the other CNE officials to make sure the full schedule’s available to the public, in view of a possible recall process, because partial schedules don’t allow picturing a clear scenario. He didn’t approve this schedule because it delays the process. Jorge Rodríguez said that the referendum will take place on March 2017 with luck, adding that the opposition doesn’t want to start the signature verification process because they’re planning a coup d’etat.

Accused and accusers

This Thursday, the Prosecutor’s Office accused the head of Interpol Lara, Eliécer García Torrealba, along with three National Guard officers, two airport officers and three other men of being involved with the case of 349 cocaine packs confiscated on March 24 this year in La Romana International Airport, Dominican Republic.

With this information in mind, let’s review the statements of the Minister of Interior, Justice and Peace, Gustavo González López, who claimed to have evidence of the relation of political leaders and businessmen with violent individuals who operated in opposition manifestations. It all boils down to “talent recruitment” through social networks to manifest with violence. The evidence? Confessions of people arrested in Zulia, who claim to have been “financed by right wing political parties.”

Jorge Rodríguez, signature authenticator and mayor, contributed this jewel: “If you’re pursuing violence next Saturday in Caracas, we say this again, you’re not going anywhere,” taking the chance to accuse Henrique Capriles and Chúo Torrealba of being the prime instigators of violence in Venezuela. Capriles clarified later on Thursday that this is a gathering, not a march, that they won’t go to the CNE because the institution is closed that day.

Against transphobia

The National Assembly unanimously approved an agreement declaring May 17 as “Day against homophobia, transphobia and biphobia,” demanding respect for individuality and equality, the fight against discrimination, violence and arbitrary segregation of people for their sexual orientation or gender. Delsa Solórzano said that the plenary will soon be presented with a Law banning hate crimes against the LGBT community.

Deputy Tamara Adrián said: “I’m proud of this moment because I head an international organization that seeks to make discrimination and LGBT rights violations more visible,” reminding us that the United Nations have established this day to create public awareness about tolerance and gender diversity, to avoid attacks and injustice.

Nuestro insólito reverso

Try your best to explain to a foreigner how, in Venezuela, three opposition deputies were attacked and robbed by National Guard officers at the TSJ building. If the challenge proves too difficult, then try to explain how Nicolás is sure that six months from now, exactly on November -the date estimated by the MUD for the activation of the recall referendum against him-, the “economic war” will be won and then scarcity and inflation will be a bad memory. You can add that, according to Nicolás, anybody who promotes violence must be tried, “whoever they are,” even though the military and the police are excluded.

We move on to Diosdado Cabello, who sued The Wall Street Journal with his deputy salary, and now files another lawsuit against Spanish journal ABC. Or maybe the Defence minister, Vladimir Padrino López, speaking about strategies for territory defence operations because “in the same way that the divide between citizen security and national security,” the Armed Forces have an obligation to act. With his version of paramilitarism as an excuse for military officers to remain on the street.

We end with the TSJ’s Constitutional Chamber. They’re preparing a decision made out by the seven justices, to dismantle the National Assembly’s Board of Directors, arguing that they were in contempt for refusing to comply with the previous decision that suspended articles for the Assembly’s Rules of Procedure, the very decision that undermines Parliament’s authority. 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.