Huge Lines for an ID

SAIME announced its re-opening, to stimulate participation in the “elections” but offices were overwhelmed and overcrowded after six months of inactivity, and abuses and arbitrary behavior reigned

Dysfunctional bureaucracy at its worst.

Photo: Evtv Miami

  • The main offices of the ID, Immigration and Migrant Matters Service (SAIME) all over the country were full on Monday, since it’s so hard to get an ID in Venezuela. Nicolás’s regime announced a special day for IDs as an incentive for the “elections” in December, but the SAIME had been closed for over six months as part of the measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 and Venezuelans lost their right to an ID. The lines were long since early on Monday, and as expected, citizens didn’t respect social distance. The hours established didn’t matter, the relationship citizens have with SAIME is like families with kidnappers: the state has the resources, it makes the “rules” and can even agree on another price for the ransom. 
  • The opposition is organizing a popular consultation to reject Nicolás’s regime and move its base. It will take place around the same date of the “elections,” following the idea that it’ll help show the general rejection for Nicolás amid the complex humanitarian emergency worsened by the pandemic, although it doesn’t offer a route for transition: “This is, I’d like to emphasize it, the last resort in our Constitution,” said Blanca Rosa Mármol de León, former TSJ justice, member in the committee organizing it. In Venezuela “we’ve been fighting for 20 years, using every method available in the Constitution, which have been systematically taken from us,” she added. She didn’t announce the exact date, but she said that the Presidency isn’t rotational, it’s direct and in the first degree, and that’s why the opposition still demands free and fair elections. 
  • In her double role as vice president and Economy minister, Delcy Rodríguez said that there isn’t hyperinflation in Venezuela and ruled out the dollarization, but she didn’t say that she’s making contact with some creditors (bondholders in Colombia, Argentina and Europe) in an attempt to renegotiate the debt in case the sanctions are lifted after the U.S. elections. This was reported by Bloomberg. 
  • Nicolás’s Foreign minister, Jorge Arreaza, participated in the 36th FAO Regional Conference for Latin America and the Caribbean to say three things: All our problems are related to sanctions, the “Mano a mano” program should be applied to Venezuela (a plan ambiguously described for countries subjected to unilateral sanctions), and Petrocaribe will be launched “under another modality” that would allow chavismo to face sanctions. 
  • Arreaza also said that Nicolás’s “Anti-Blockade Law” will allow to take measures in the food sector and that his government is doing “everything to comply with the goals of sustainable development.” The fact is that Venezuela moved back in all of them. 
  • PDVSA bonds quadrupled, after a judge in the U.S. said that these documents are “valid and executable”, said Reuters. However, they can’t be paid collected yet, because the OFAC is protecting CITGO. 
  • PDVSA plans to unload oil from the Nabarima ship, some internal sources told Reuters on Monday, amid increasing environmental concern for the risk of 1.3 million barrels of oil that may sink into the Paria Gulf. 
  • The Venezuelan Association of University Rectors reiterated on Monday that universities lack the technology to teach remotely and since they don’t have fair budgets, there is no way to give professors wages or benefits according to hyperinflation. 
  • NGO Acceso a la Justicia denounced before the IACHR the “elections” in December, for considering they were tailor-made for Nicolás. The NGO delivered a report explaining the implications of changes made by the TSJ and CNE to our electoral system, where they emphasize that a “mutation” was manufactured and that it has eliminated guarantees for the population. 
  • The Inter American Press Association said that the American continent is undergoing a “partial restriction of freedom of expression and press”, with Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua: these are countries without freedom of expression, and Venezuela ranks the lowest in the region. 
  • Brazilian Foreign minister Ernesto Araujó said during an OAS session that it’s necessary to denounce the regime’s crimes against humanity. He exhorted member states to raise their voice for Venezuelans. 
  • Clombian Foreign minister Claudia Blum said that in 2019 the OAS decided not to recognize Nicolás’s presidency and assured that the OAS will keep its position until credible presidential elections are held. About immigration, she said that the flow of migrants decreased because of the pandemic, but it will eventually return and it will likely be bigger. 
  • Ecuadorian Foreign minister Luis Gallegos reiterated his “emphatic rejection for the growing deterioration of human rights and fundamental liberties in Venezuela.” He highlighted that the economic and social situation in Venezuela is critical because of the political tension, the human rights violations and the pandemic. 
  • OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro exhorted the international community to recover democracy in Venezuela: “It’s a failed state with a criminal dynamic,” he warned and said that he recently appointed international human rights lawyer Jared Genser as a special advisor on the Responsibility to Protect. 
  • The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned other people and companies for terrorism, including Talib Ahmed Luqman, an Australian citizen with Venezuelan passport Nº 137492291, for being a financial and logistical facilitator for Al-Qaeda. How did he get that passport?

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.