Photo: Notiactual retrieved.

Venezuela’s Supreme Tribunal (TSJ) just imposed chavista student Jessica Bello as the new president of the University of Carabobo’s (UC) Student Federation, ignoring the actual results from two weeks ago, proving, for the millionth time, that the regime won’t accept losing elections, even at this level.

See, last November 14, elections for the UC’s Student Federation took place, following the arbitrary detention of former Federation president, Iván Uzcátegui, and Dining Hall director, Ramón Bracho. They were accused of corruption by Carabobo’s governor, Rafael Lacava. The night before the election, chavista student groups, supported by Lacava and Diosdado Cabello, named a new electoral commission to replace the one installed a year ago, led by student Eduardo León. The new commission, headed by chavista Law student Álvaro Londoño, claimed that León abandoned his post after failing to show up at meetings prior to the election. The move was described as a “coup” by Pablo Aure, the university’s secretary.

Two parallel elections took place, each one overseen by a different electoral commission, both marked by violence and armed groups rampaging through campus, allegedly under command of the governor’s office.

Student Federations here are made up and elected entirely by students. They’re an integral part of universities, but not at a judicial or administrative levels. Instead, they coordinate the student movements and satellite groups from both chavista and opposition political parties within all major universities. Federations are meant to fight for student’s rights, while working with different guilds to solve institutional and academic problems. Although their real power is limited, they’re a major force in protests and rallies, also incubating future politicians. Many well-known figures, like Tarek El Aissami, Hugbel Roa, Freddy Guevara, Miguel Pizarro and Juan Requesens, were all part of student movements and their Federations.

So, given their influence, student elections are a serious business.

A few hours after voting stations were closed at the UC, contradictory reports came from both electoral commissions. Londoño’s group claimed that chavista Jessica Bello won, without giving figures. This was quickly spread on social networks by Lacava.

León’s commission, however, announced through the University’s social networks that opposition candidate and med student, Marlon Díaz, had won with 6,083 votes, about 80% of the total.

A few hours later, Díaz proclaimed his victory, supported by university authorities who scrutinized the results:

The news went viral, with prominent figures from most opposition parties showing their support. Díaz’s victory was a small, yet much needed triumph for the heavily-hit oppo; some highlighted this result as proof that, with proper organization and unity, the government could be electorally beaten.

But last Tuesday, almost two weeks later, the TSJ admitted a request introduced by Bello, reminding everyone how elections work under chavismo. The Tribunal named Bello as the Federation’s president, since Eduardo León “usurped the functions of the legally constituted commission led by Álvaro Londoño.” The ruling is a perfect example of chavista pseudo-law.

The university’s response came quickly after, with a promise to “enforce its autonomy and its community’s will.”


So expect protests, and the repression they bring, in the coming days.

The TSJ’s decision comes just three weeks before the municipal elections, where only a fraction of the opposition will run. Chavismo is expected to win comfortably at those, and although the Federations are far from being key organizations for chavismo, this thing is about the message: We don’t impose our candidate because we need to, we do it because we can.

After all, what’s stealing a college election once you’ve neutered the entire National Assembly?

Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.


  1. On the one hand, I know that student federation elections are a big deal in many parts of Latin America…in a way that is probably alien to many North Americans. On the other hand, that the TSJ has to intervene to steal elections even at this level, really says something about the complete destruction of the judicial branch that has taken place.

  2. Juan, I read years ago, when Chavez was still alive, that Chavismo had never won not even ONE professional/student organization election (engineers/doctors/lawyers/businessmen/students/, so much so that said elections were either invalidated by Chavista authorities, simply not authorized/bothered to be held, or, as the case for businessmen, the Chavistas simply created a parallel organization that received Govt. recognition/benefits.

  3. I’m convinced that half of the posts being deleted are being deleted by someone other than Quico.

    Who doesn’t speak English.

    This is getting ridiculous.

  4. I made a very reasonable post about January 10th, when Maduro becomes even more illegitimate.

    That the global news is many countries are going to tighten the screws then.

    And urging Trump to impose an oil embargo.

    Because that lack of hard cash will screw China and Russia, who won’t be able to get their barrel loan repayments, because without the U.S. cash, PDVSA can’t pump.

    And without that hard cash, PDVSA can’t satisfy the Crystallex or ConocoPhillips payment obligations, stripping Citgo from PDVSA in a mere few months. Let aione their bond obligations.

    But I guess this is something Quico doesn’t root for.

    • I dunno Ira.. I just read your well written post stating your position with good points about future (impending) consequences of the fraudulent presidential election this year. Good job! Keep posting!

      • But that’s only the first of a few payments, with each company still owned approximately a billion and a billion and a half, respectively.

        A U.S. oil embargo cuts them off at the knees, and I can’t see how it would affect prices when OPEC is going to meet to discuss cuts anyway, and with U.S. production able to ramp up at any time, at breakneck speed, to stabilize prices.

        But the bigger game is the collateral damage it does to China and Russia, and hurting their influence in the region. And the timing couldn’t be better, with Brazil and Argentina wanting Chinese predatory influence gone.

      • I forgot to say they still owe $800 to be paid in three installments but this time is serious. No clowns 🤡 response. They had to go to a friendlier court in France 🇫🇷 and still Maduro got a $200 fine. If this is not the end, the next step is to confiscate all private property. Yet clean money they’ve got. So there is no reason to keep Benezuela in such disarray. I change the name on purpose.

  5. so we are just running around deleting posts… that’s sad. Yesterday I was pretty sure I made a post and now it’s gone. Interesting

  6. I’m a student of the Universidad de Carabobo myself. Those elections were meant to be just a student business, not even workers or teachers could vote in the elections. However, Lacava wanted to “meter su mano pelua”, with no other intention that to take the university. Chavistas had no support from the students, yes in some faculties there are “movimientos chavistas” (like student political parties), and I were very impressed that they even had that little support; apparently some chavistas remain in the closet.

    Jessica Bello, “The captain” as she calls herself, said that she wasn’t supported by the government or Lacava, and those who supported her believed it! Suckers, there is their non-support.

    We are going to fight for our rights! They cannot take the University, we will not allow it.
    Also, those elections kind of gave me hope, or at least the sense that not everything is lost. The students really where exited, and the atmosphere was really that of an elections. Many students, while not politicians jump out because they were worried of the current state of the institution.

  7. I recently posted that some property we purchased in Venezuela was usurped by a captain in the military. Our family was thrown off the property at gunpoint. That, and some other interesting posts were deleted really baffles me because I was under the impression that the Caracas Chronicles wanted to share the truth. I was hoping to get some direction or the possibility press agents being interested and curious in researching stories like mine; we have been making appearances at all these courts with no results and we have the property and purchase rights. Obviously, there is no transparency in anything in Venezuela based on the fact that posts are being deleted even from here. If you want to get out of the mess you’re in, it takes courage and knowledge. If you are going to do the same as the autocrats then you are just hot air too. So far The knowledge I’ve gained is that there is a lot of fear. If the latter was true my post and others would have been deleted

  8. I recently posted that some property we purchased in Venezuela was usurped by a captain in the military. Our family was thrown off the property at gunpoint. If you want to get out of the mess you’re in, it takes courage and knowledge. If you are going to do the same as the autocrats then you are just hot air too. So far The knowledge I’ve gained is that there is a lot of fear. If the latter was true my post and others would have been deleted


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here