The following is the introduction to an Election Report written by independent election observers during the December 6th elections in Venezuela. AfGJ assisted and encouraged the observers to participate.
On December 5, 2020 I traveled to Venezuela as an independent international election observer for the National Assembly Elections in Venezuela. I was accompanied by two representatives of Black Lives Matter-Oklahoma City. We were assisted in this observer mission by AfGJ. The A-APRP(GC) also supported my participation. We were invited by the Ministerio del Poder Popular, Venezuelan Electoral Power, The Plataforma Clase Obrera Ant Imperialista and the International Cumbe of Afrodescendants, (Cumbe Internacional Afrodescendiente).As we observed the December 6thelection, I realized that that we needed to be in those spaces at that time because the progressive government of Venezuela and their political party, the PSUV, have done so much for the Afro-Descendants and the Venezuelan people in general, and thus we owe thema debt of gratitude.We saw people proud to defend their government and their country against the regime-change agenda of the Trump-Pence-Pompeo administration of the United States. Since the election of President Hugo Chavez in 1999and his expressed desire to use the oil wealth of Venezuela for the benefit of her people, the US has held the absurd position that Venezuela is a threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. The Obama administration officially labeled Venezuela this threat to the USA in March 2015. It is clear to any unbiased observer that Venezuela is a threat only by demonstrating how good governance and prioritizing the people rather than an imperialist agenda contrasts with the privation and suffering of poor,working class and marginalized people in the United States, which spends its wealth on neoliberal and imperialist adventurism rather than investing in its population.We are thankful for this opportunity to act in solidarity with the Venezuelan people in ensuring the integrity of their elections. But even more than this we want to make this report a teaching experience for those in the US who read it. We congratulate Venezuela on conducting a free, fair, transparent, and democratic election. We are elated to have played a small part in the Venezuelan people’s triumph against neoliberalism, neo-colonialism and the reactionary forces used for U.S. interference and regime change agenda.•The Significance of the December 6thelections
We understand the significance of this election for the Venezuelan National Assembly, created by the constitution of 2000. We recall the reactionary opposition that seized the National Assembly in the December 7, 2015 election, winning 99 seats of the 167 seat-legislature and giving them a super majority. They immediately set about sabotaging, dismantling, and destroying the Bolivarian project.In the Bolivarian Constitution of 2000,it states that “…the deputies are to elect a president and two vice-presidents from among themselves to administer and represent the National Assembly for a period of one year.”It was this opposition led National Assembly of 2015-2020 that elected Juan Guaido, leader of the Popular Will (VP) party as president of the National Assembly for the period January 2019 –2020. On January 23, 2019, the day after Guaido had received acall from US Vice President Pence, he declared himself president of Venezuela and illegally took the oath of office1. Although Juan Guaido was relatively unknown both within Venezuela and outside of it. he immediately became a spectacle in international politics.He soon proved to be little more than a neocolonial agent, the product of Anti-Chavismo right-wing Catholic university student uprising of 2006 that was pushing for regime change in Venezuela atthebehest of the United States of America.After Guaido declared himself the interim president of the country illegally on January 23, 2019 the government of the US, Canada, England, and Israel immediately recognized his presidency and as a pre-planned arrangement and they solicited 30 other countries to formally recognize his presidency as well. It is notable that only one of these countries are on the African continent, it is unsurprising that this country happened to bethe feudal monarchy of Morocco.In 2020 Guaido’s term of office in the National Assembly expired. With splits inside the Venezuelan right-wing, which had grown tired of Guaido’s individualistic plots, the National Assembly elected Luis Parra as its President for the 2020-2021 legislative session. However, the very day of the election, Guaido claimed to have won the presidency once again in a meeting held at theEl Nacional, the nationalnewspaper.It was taken to be more of a show of his desperation than a serious dispute.With the previous year in mind, an examination of the revolutionary significance of the December 6thelections victory for PSUV is in order. Though its turnout of 31% voter participation was low for its election, Venezuela rate was compatible with other nations for 2020, especially considering the conditions caused by the global pandemic. Venezuela’s rate was just above Egypt with 28% (elections held Nov. 7-8, 2020) and Jordan at 29.8% (elections held Nov. 10, 2020) and just below Romania’s at 33%, (elections held Dec. 6, 2020), andJamaica at 37% (elections held Sep. 3, 2020).
The US midterm elections of 2019 saw a mere 40% turnout andwas not held in the midst of a global pandemic.On January 4th, 2021, Deputy Jorge Rodriquez (pictured below) was elected President of the Venezuelan National Assembly. He is the son of Jorge Antonio Rodriguez, the popular socialist leader brutally murdered on 25 July 1976 by forces loyal to then President Andres Carlos Perez.
It should be noted that in spite of their obvious political differences. PSUV and Venezuelan opposition parties certified the 2020 elections as fair and fraud-free. What we observed along with 261 other independent international election observers from over 34 countries including the USA, is the election was a peaceful, fair, transparent and credible process.