Political crisis rumbles on with neither side winning
The political crisis in Venezuela continues to rumble on with neither side able to deliver a knockout blow on the other.
In the latest move, the opposition controlled National Assembly has summoned President Nicolás Maduro to appear before parliament on 1st November to answer charges of “criminal and political responsibility and of abandoning his post.”
The opposition Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) has, so far been unable to keep up the momentum on getting a referendum to impeach the president because the electoral commission is controlled by the president. The MUD had easily succeeded in gaining the signatures needed to proceed to the second part of the referendum request but the electoral commission has delayed giving permission for the next stage because of alleged fraud and annulled the process last week. If the vote takes place after 10th January then it would be too late to call a fresh presidential election and instead Maduro’s Vice-President would take over if the opposition were successful.
Making matters even worse for the opposition, the electoral council, Supreme Court and armed forces are not autonomous and all of them do the bidding of the president.
Against Maduro would appear to be around 80% of the population as crime spirals out of control, inflation soars and the economy nosedives along with shortages of just about every essential product. The government has said that they want peace with the opposition, but in reality that means they want the opposition to back down.
The latest bid to put President Maduro on trial may make good headlines but it is unlikely to move the government when the Supreme Court has invalidated most of the National Assembly’s decisions so far.