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Venezuela in Focus I: Gov’t and opposition long at odds; agreement needed

Venezuela in Focus I: Gov’t and opposition long at odds; agreement needed

Since dominating the National Assembly less than half a year ago, the opposition force has been rallying time and again to oust President Nicolas Maduro.

However, due to a tight control of the government, the Supreme Court and the military force, the president always has something inside his sleeves to crush each offensive.

(Soundbite) Oscar Martinez, Computer Scientist
“What is happening in Venezuela now has already been reflected for years and regretfully. It has been a class struggle – businessmen versus the people, or the people versus businessmen. Entrepreneurs are the ones that dominate distribution and production chains and the people are the ones that consume the products.”

(Soundbite) Hector Gutierrez, Environmentalist and Social Activist
“It is a debate between a restricted concept of democracy that we make a formal representation and the democracy where we have been talking about who is the protagonist and who is direct to the people. Or a debate about the union between self-management and co-management made by the same people. These are the two models that they are in conflict.”

In the latest chapter, the opposition has collected some 1.9 million signatures for a referendum to recall the president. The National Electoral Board is confirming their authenticity. If confirmed, another four million is required to make the plebiscite come true.

(Soundbite) Hector Gutierrez, Environmentalist and Social Activist
“We are at war, where different continental and global powers vie, but especially at continental level. Some people are trying to overthrow those government leaders who are trying to take the people’s side or at least have advanced inclusion projects where the people are the protagonists.”

Just finishing half of his six-year term, Maduro still get some more hot potatoes to handle. As seen from national television, he is often confident to carry on his ruling and foresee any coup allegedly planned by the opposition force as well as the United States.

(Soundbite) Nelson Requena, Craftsman
“They (the government) want everything to go well, but the other side go abroad to rant about everything that happens here. They don’t agree with the government. If they could reach an agreement and try to do things better, I think everything would work well.”

Yes, the common ground is right there. If one shuns it, there means something else behind.

(Soundbite) Nelson Requena, Craftsman
“I think there is a solution, as I already said. If these people really did agree with each other, really cared for Venezuela and were looking to make things better, I think everything would change in less than a year. However, they don’t do this and all the time it is like a war, because I feel these people desire power.”

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