Venezuelan “Opposition” Supports International Financial Aid For Maduro Regime

Maduro’s regime is going to receive a loan of 250 million USD to “improve the supply of electricity in the country," with the approval of the opposition

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“The plan is not the most correct nor will it serve to alleviate the electricity crisis,” according to the experts. (PanAm Post photo montage)

 

The Chavista government has plunged Venezuela into the biggest electricity crisis in the country’s history following a case of corruption worth millions. Now, Nicolas Maduro’s regime is going to receive a loan of 250 million USD to “improve the supply of electricity in the country,” and this plan has the approval of the opposition.

The Latin American Development Bank (CAF) and the United Nations (UN) are evaluating how to provide financial support to the dictatorship under a supposed humanitarian mechanism, seeking the help of the parliament, which has an opposition majority.

The likelihood that this loan will be granted has caused great controversy in the South American country, as it would be a kind of “prize” to the dictatorial regime that is drowning in millions of cases of corruption and money laundering. We must remember that the money earmarked to solve the electricity crisis could have ended up in the accounts of industrialists and government officials linked to chavismo, while many of the projects remain paralyzed.

The fact that the CAF grants a million dollar loan to the tyrannical Maduro, and that the Venezuelan Parliament approves it, also signifies the recognition of the regime that today usurps power since the money isn’t given to the interim government of Juan Guaido, but to the Venezuelan dictatorship. Some defend this loan given to the urgency of solving the electrical crisis in the South American country.

“The project is a CAF loan to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela that is requested by the Ministry of Finance and must be approved by the National Assembly,” a UN official wrote in an email response to Reuters’ questions. The official also noted that the funding mechanism would have a system of checks and balances that would supposedly ensure that resources are used only to alleviate the crisis in the Venezuelan electricity system.

The bill for the proposal does not describe the financial terms of the loan, which are usually provided to the National Assembly before such funding is approved. If the Venezuelan Parliament approves it, it could also be considered a setback to the international sanctions by the United States as well as those by the Lima Group last year, where member countries urged financial institutions not to lend money to the dictatorship of the South American country.

On the one hand, the Venezuelan opposition is asking the international community for more sanctions and pressure against the regime. On the other, it is about to approve a loan for tyranny.

Overpriced loan?

Electricity sector experts Miguel Lara and Jose Aguilar told El Pitazo that the loan of 350 million USD “is overpriced by about 140 million USD for the execution of the project.” They point out that the most significant investment is 231.5 million USD for the state of Zulia, of which 194 million USD would be allocated for “the incorporation of 240 megawatts in Rapid Response Generation units or Fast Power units in the Ramon Laguna and Rafael Urdaneta plants over a period of five months.”

The project does not specify the model of machines to be acquired or the companies that would be favored by these contracts. Furthermore, according to Lara and Aguilar, “the price indicated is higher than the market quotations.”

Aguilar pointed out that in Venezuela there are new machines that are not functioning because they were never installed, and that the installation time should not exceed 45 working days “because otherwise, it would not be a rapid response generation. They have an estimated time of five months to install some units that are already ready, which does not require significant civil works for assembly. “This is not the best plan, nor will it alleviate the electrical crisis,” say the experts.

UNT, the controversial loan promoting party

The funding mechanism indicates that the project’s board of directors would be made up of a representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), one from CAF, one from Maduro’s regime, and one from the opposition. Recently, however, some opposition deputies face accusations of corruption not only for having helped Maduro’s frontman continue his illicit business inside and outside Venezuela but also for allegedly having sought to benefit from contracts in the state-run Monomeros.

It is more suspicious that Manuel Rosales, former governor of the state of Zulia and leader of Un Nuevo Tiempo (UNT), is behind this loan initiative. His party has been accused on several occasions of “playing” in favor of the regime in exchange for some benefits.

Rosales, who was in exile and avoided jail, returned to Venezuela and was detained for a few months. Suspiciously, he was later released. Additionally, Maduro’s regime had forbidden him to leave Venezuela, yet he has managed to enter and leave the country without restrictions.

Also, after the fraudulent regional elections, when Chavism seized the governorship of Zulia from the opposition, Rosales announced that he would run for a new election. He not only trampled on the will of the Zulians but also sidestepped the original winner, Juan Pablo Guanipa of Justice First.

The Maduro regime disqualified the UNT leader, but on 30th October 2017, the Chavista Supreme Court suspended his disqualification. Immediately afterward, he announced his candidacy for the elections, and the regime arbitrarily conducted the same elections in Zulia once again.

The National Electoral Council had awarded Guanipa the victory in the constituency, which Rosales was eyeing. However, since Guanipa was the only opposition governor unwilling to subordinate himself to the illegitimate National Constituent Assembly, Chavism ordered a new election, which Rosales then contested.

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