A top Venezuelan opposition party announced on Friday it would boycott April’s presidential vote, showing divides within the opposition coalition. Popular Will, the third largest opposition party, said it would “not nominate or endorse any candidate” in the April 22 presidential election that it says amounts to a “fraud,” DW reported. “Those who register in these conditions are doing the dictatorship a favor,” said the party led by Leopoldo Lopez. He is under house arrest on allegations of inciting violence in 2014 protests. Venezuela’s opposition is huddled around the Democratic Unity Round Table (MUD), an alliance of some 20 parties opposed to Socialist President Nicolas Maduro.
Articles about voting issues in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
Venezuela’s National Electoral Council highlights 15 audits have been planned to guarantee the process’ transparency. Venezuela’s National Electoral Council (CNE) has confirmed the date for the next presidential elections will be April 22 and provided details on the dates for voter and candidate registration. The announcement was made by Sandra Oblitas, CNE’s Vice-president, who added that 531 locations would be open throughout the country for voters to register and to change where they vote. Venezuelans will have until Feb. 20 to register to vote in the presidential elections.
The Venezuelan government’s decision to plow ahead with early presidential elections over the objections of the opposition risks spurring more international sanctions and exacerbating an economic and social crisis driving increasing numbers of Venezuelans into exile, analysts said Thursday. Opposition politicians were meeting the day after officials announced the April 22 vote, deciding whether to challenge socialist President Nicolas Maduro in an election that several foreign nations have already vowed not to recognize — or to boycott it. They accuse Maduro’s government of rigging recent elections and making a fair race impossible, in part by barring the most popular opposition parties and candidates. International condemnation of the snap election has begun pouring in.
Venezuela: Few Challengers in Sight, Venezuela Sets April 22 for Presidential Vote | The New York Times
The Venezuelan government said Wednesday that it would hold a snap presidential election on April 22, putting the unpopular administration of President Nicolás Maduro in the hands of voters at a time when most top challengers have been barred from running. The announcement was made by Tibisay Lucena, the president of the country’s electoral commission, who said the date had been chosen after negotiations with opposition politicians had failed to reach an agreement about how to conduct the election fairly. The election will allow Venezuelans to “freely decide their fate,” she said. “We are committed, as always, to our constitutional task, to guarantee the right conditions so that democratic differences are settled through an efficient, transparent and balanced vote.”
Venezuela’s government and opposition pushed on Tuesday with talks aimed at soothing their country’s political crisis, but President Nicolas Maduro’s bid for virtually unopposed re-election in early polls weighed heavily on the negotiations. The government’s chief negotiator, Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez, said “electoral guarantees” for the vote would be on the table — as was the issue of US economic sanctions that have worsened Caracas’ precarious finances. “We are working on all the issues and we have narrowed positions on all the issues,” he said as he arrived at the Dominican Republic’s foreign ministry, the venue for the talks overseen by several Latin American foreign ministers. The latest round of negotiations opened on December 1.
Venezuela is under mounting international pressure over the government’s decision to push up presidential elections under conditions that opponents say overwhelmingly favor President Nicolas Maduro, who is so far the only candidate. Spain, a major trading partner with deep roots in Venezuela, became the latest government to break diplomatic ties on Friday, while French President Emmanuel Macron said that he’s open to additional European Union sanctions against what he called an “unacceptable authoritarian shift” by Maduro. The pro-government national constituent assembly last week called for an election to be held by the end of April but set no date.
Venezuela’s highest court ruled Thursday the country’s largest opposition coalition won’t be able to run a joint ticket in upcoming presidential election. The Supreme Court of Venezuela (TSJ) found the decade-old opposition coalition, the MUD, violated the norm of avoiding “double affiliation” – the act of holding membership of two parties at the same time. “This grouping character openly contradicts the prohibition of double membership,” the TSJ said. The court’s decision put a question mark over the future of the MUD, which has sought to unify Venezuela’s disparate opposition parties since 2008.
Venezuela: Maduro eyes re-election as Venezuela fires starting gun for presidential vote | The Guardian
Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro has said that he is ready to seek another term in office after the pro-government constituent assembly declared that new presidential elections must be held by 30 April. Analysts described Tuesday’s announcement as an attempt by the ruling socialist party to exploit opposition disarray – and cement control before the country’s economic crisis becomes even more acute. The announcement comes after the European Union levied sanctions against seven high-ranking officials for their role in cracking down on democratic freedoms and for violently crushing anti-Maduro protests last year. “If the world wants to apply sanctions, we will apply elections,” said a defiant Diosdado Cabello, one of the sanctioned officials and vice-president of the assembly, a pro-Maduro body that has assumed extraordinary powers to run the country. “There will be revolution for a long time to come.”
Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro announced Sunday that leading opposition parties will be barred from taking part in next year’s presidential vote after they boycotted mayoral polls, in a move set to further consolidate his grip on power. That includes the groups of key figures who have led street protests against his rule such as Henrique Capriles, Leopoldo Lopez and others, Mr Maduro told reporters after casting his vote in the municipal polls. “That’s what the National Constituent Assembly set out,” he said, referring to a controversial Maduro-allied special powers legislature whose legitimacy has been questioned by many in the international community.
Venezuelans will choose hundreds of mayors on Sunday in elections pitting candidates backed by President Nicolas Maduro against a fractured opposition still bruised by a poor showing in recent gubernatorial voting. The ballots for local leaders in 335 city halls across the oil-rich nation are the final national elections before presidential elections next year in which Maduro is expected to run. Voting takes place against a backdrop of soaring inflation, shortages of food and medicine, and charges that Maduro’s government has undermined Venezuela’s democracy by imprisoning dissidents and usurping the powers of the opposition-controlled Congress. The economic and political crises have caused the socialist president’s popularity to plunge but the opposition has largely been unable to take advantage.