- On Wednesday, the CNE imposed by the TSJ granted a second extension to the nomination of candidates for the “election” in December, and the process that began on August 10th will now end on September 4th. A theory says that this will allow the prêt-à-porter opposition to define their list of aspiring candidates, another theory says that it will allow the opposition against the caretaker government to do the same and nominate using Fuerza del Cambio’s spot on the ballot. Where does this story come from? From the meeting former governor Henrique Capriles Radonski had with his party, Primero Justicia, justifying how important it was to participate in the CNE’s plans. Henri Falcón, always concerned with making it even harder, wrote yesterday: “I support Capriles and other sectors’ participation, because they have a lot of value to add to this country (…) leaving adventures and anti-politics behind.” For now, Primero Justicia is trying to not separate.
- Caretaker President and AN Speaker Juan Guaidó posted a thread on Twitter to summarize the progress made during these days of consulting with other sectors and his position regarding the potential loss of the coalition: “We’re together, incorporating the vision of all sectors of the country and building a route (…), the importance of this process is that we can and must unite all visions in a joint agenda.” He added that the lack of unity only benefits a dictatorship that “pretends to blackmail and use its corruption on some leaders of the democratic forces, so they’ll participate in this parliamentary fraud. Guaidó assured that nobody will participate in this fake election and that those who do it are playing for the guilty team. The offer of releasing political prisoners, or ending persecution of deputies or ceasing to block candidates from running, can’t be attractive for an opposition that has been dismantled through violence, directed by an unscrupulous adversary.
- The Venezuelan Communist Party is now the guardian of the electoral alliance that, out of the Polo Patriótico, will compete against the PSUV in December. The alliance is composed by PCV, Izquierda Unida, Corriente Marxista, Lucha de Clases, PRT, MBR-200, Red Autónoma de Comuneros, Somos Lina, parts of the PPT, parts of the Tupamaro and, starting yesterday afternoon, Compromiso País (Compa), because the TSJ Constitutional Chamber decided to grant the leadership of the party to members allied with Nicolás. They did the same with the Movimiento de Integridad Nacional (MIN), meaning that, from this moment til next Friday, the alleged 107 organizations called to nominate candidates will keep reducing until they comply: it’s either Nicolás or no one.
- Three important facts pointed out by electoral source journalist Eugenio Martínez: never before had the CNE hidden information about the number of nominations, the opacity about technical procedure that should be public is alarming and, until there isn’t information about the system, trusting the results of whatever it is they do will be an act of faith.
- Nicolás thinks that his 7+7 intermittent quarantine system, in addition to reducing cases of COVID-19, will save the already deteriorated national economy, so he decreed yesterday that the 7+7 system will remain in place while the emergency lasts. He also announced economic measures to allegedly protect small and medium businesses: new micro-businesses that are created starting today and three months after the pandemic is over, won’t pay fees in Saren or the Registry. They won’t pay the patent or income tax on income generated until December 31st, 2020.
- The economic vice presidency, in the hands of Tareck El Aissami, will present a mechanism to simplify all procedures to start a company: “The time to own a business can’t be over one week,” said Nicolás, who also reported that he had been presented with a proposal of VAT payments, from biweekly to weekly and he’ll approve it. Venezuela is the American country with the longest period to constitute a company. Bringing the bureaucracy down to one week is only a promise.
- Didalco Bolívar, president of the National Institute for Small and Medium-Sized Business (Inapymi), said that “all of Venezuela has access to credit,” in a country with a contraction of over 70% and a credit line in banks that doesn’t even reach one point of our GDP. In the words of Luis Pedro España: “The indicators are near Cuba’s: we have the lowest rate of economic activity, the worst payment per hour of work, the worst return to the education system, highest percentage of non-labor income (transfers and remittances) and forced immigration. These guys did their homework.”
- Nicolás’s vice president, Delcy Rodríguez reported on Wednesday that there are 807 new cases of coronavirus, for a total of 41,965 cases they’ve admitted to. She also reported 8 new deaths, for a total of 351.
- Professor Francisco Monaldi explained yesterday that reliable sources told him that in Venezuela “even if there are no more diesel imports for the rest of the year, there wouldn’t be a diesel shortage in the next few months, because of the accumulated inventory.” There’s enough inventory for one semester, because we produce enough diesel with a high sulfur content in refineries, and because of the sanctions, it’s diesel with a low sulphuric content that can be imported.
- The Presidential Commission for Human Rights reported that during the first six months of 2020, there were 162 attacks against journalists and press workers. Out of these attacks, 85 were perpetrated by security bodies after the decree of the state of alarm announced by Nicolás’s regime in March.
- Baltasar Garzón rejected the position of the Cape Verdean government, defending the legality of the process against Colombian citizen Alex Saab. The former Spanish judge reiterated his petition to the Cape Verdean Executive to not yield to the pressure imposed by the U.S. and to reject Saab’s extradition, against whom there are several accusations for alleged corruption. The U.S. denied trying to influence the process of Saab’s extradition request.
- The Harvest Natural Resources Corporation retracted their lawsuit against former Oil Minister Rafael Ramírez, reported AP. In mid June, a federal judge annulled a ruling against Ramírez for 1.4 billion dollars. Harvest sued him for being behind the paying of bribes to approve sales of assets. The company also sued the former minister saying that they lost millions of dollars when Venezuela refused to allow the company to sell oil operations in the country.
- TunnelBear, paid VPN service, is offering 10 GB of free data for a month to users in Venezuela so over 60,000 healthcare workers can access AirTM (blocked by the state) and collect the caretaker government’s bonus.
Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported.
Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.Donate