No Arepas

Your daily briefing for Thursday, November 17th, 2016. Translated by Javier Liendo.

For Thursday, November 17, 2016. Translated by Javier Liendo.

The head of Alimentos Polar, Manuel Felipe Larrazábal, said that white corn will last until January, 2017: “Pay attention, for the first time in 55 years, we’re not producing Harina Pan in any of our three facilities,” explaining that the crop isn’t enough to cover the industry’s requirements and it will only last until mid January, adding that controlled prices don’t cover production costs for agricultural products and that they need the State to sell them 120,000 tons. Meanwhile, the special committee created by the National Assembly to monitor the humanitarian crisis and corn production, demanded the price per kilo of white corn to be adjusted above Bs. 250.

In the OAS

This Wednesday, the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States discussed the “Declaration of the Permanent Council in support of national dialogue in Venezuela,” endorsing the negotiations mediated by UNASUR and the Vatican. In a clear demonstration of their diplomatic skills, the national delegation left the session because it was meddling, according to them: “We can’t be in a scenario where the process might be disturbed,” said Carmen Velázquez, deputy representative before OAS, who added that the session was called “without the Venezuelan delegation’s consent.” The final document merely encourages the government and the MUD to “achieve concrete results in a reasonable amount of time to solve the difficult situation in Venezuela,” and urges political actors to act with caution, avoiding any violent action or threats to the process. Pure meddling!

What about popular sovereignty?

And Roy Daza, representative of the PSUV’s International Committee, said yesterday that people’s right to protest can’t be limited

I wish chavismo was consistent and guaranteed at home what they claim in international scenarios: sovereignty. In this regard, mayor Carlos Ocariz said that the MUD will file a protective measure before the Supreme Tribunal of Justice against the Constitutional Chamber’s decision that bans protests and their coverage, calling it an absolutely unconstitutional measure. The “March of prescriptions” is scheduled for today at 9:00 a.m. to demand the opening a humanitarian channel to facilitate the access of medicines, which are already affected by a shortage of 85%. And Roy Daza, representative of the PSUV’s International Committee, said yesterday that people’s right to protest can’t be limited. Hypocrite.

Only if it’s the PSUV

Due to Tuesday’s dispute in the National Assembly, where Héctor Rodríguez defended his colleague Tania Díaz’s honor against Rafael Guzmán, UNASUR issued a statement endorsed by Mgr. Claudio María Celli and the former presidents mediating negotiations, in which they demand the parties to cease their campaign of public accusations which don’t contribute to peaceful cohabitation; to respect public powers -the only way to preserve negotiations and their achievements- and to progress through a “a peaceful and constitutional route.” The charade of this statement, “Cohabitating in peace,” was more than evident in the face of a government that has beaten lawmakers María Corina Machado, Manuela Bolívar and Delsa Solórzano (to mention just three cases,) but is disturbed by a adjective used against one of their own legislators.

Thursday for Housing

The Venezuelan Real Estate Chamber (CIV) debunked the figures regarding the building of new housing units that Nicolás announces each week, because they’re not logical in a country with minimal income, no import of construction materials and such a low national production of concrete and steel. The head of the CIV, Carlos González, remarked that just like the private sector is retreating, the government has halted many projects and that the popular power can’t undertake the massive construction of housing units with fully functional services and urban development. Aside from that, the NGO Transparencia Venezuela presented a special report before the National Assembly’s Administration and Services Committee, concerning 12 road building and transportation projects undertaken by the Ministry of Transport and Public Works which remain unfinished after their schedules expired, where they identify financial irregularities, imprecise and opaque information, as well as constant rescheduling of their completion dates; a pattern that seems to repeat in everything chavistas do.

The end of a cycle

Nicolás met with the head of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Mohammed Barkindo, who said that the consultations carried out with member and nonmember countries were vital to reach market stability, after a long trend of low prices: “This cycle hasn’t ended yet, but perhaps we’re in the final period,” Barkindo said in Miraflores. It’s impossible not to think of the pertinence of his work to evaluate Nicolás’s presidency as he stands by his side. He added that all oil producing countries have been affected by low prices, so dialogue and consultation are essential to achieve an balance in the market.

An eleven billion dollar embezzlement

In them, he admits to having used ramp 4 at the Maiquetía International Airport (the presidential hangar) to transport drug, and refers to Diosdado Cabello as the most powerful man in Venezuela, the man who controls the Armed Forces

Although the PSUV caucus left the Hemiciclo before the plenary started, lawmaker Freddy Guevara presented before Parliament a complaint regarding alleged administrative misdeeds committed by Rafael Ramírez as head of PDVSA (from 2004 to 2013,) the result of investigations that prove 10 cases of what he called “the greatest robbery ever performed.” The opposition majority approved Rafael Ramírez’s political responsibility after debating the report. They also declared the political responsibility of Javier Alvarado Ochoa, former vice-minister of energy development, and agreed on submitting the report to the Prosecutor’s Office, the Comptroller’s Office and the remaining public powers. Guevara demanded Nicolás to remove Ramírez from his post at the United Nations.

Additionally, certain audios were played during the seventh session of the narconephews’ trial, which could prove that Franqui Flores is an experienced drug trafficker. In them, he admits to having used ramp 4 at the Maiquetía International Airport (the presidential hangar) to transport drug, and refers to Diosdado Cabello as the most powerful man in Venezuela, the man who controls the Armed Forces -with more power than Nicolás-, and on top of this, he mentions rumors of drug trafficking accusations against him.

Anzoátegui state lawmaker José Brito, member of the AN’s Energy and Oil Committee, reported on his Twitter account (@josebritor) that an electrical discharge ignited one of PDVSA’s tanks at the Centro Operativo Bare. This country won’t recover like that, not even if the whole world stopped producing oil.

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.