Venezuela: Time for Reconciliation

April 26th, 2013
in Op Ed, syndication

Written by Ruben Rivero Capriles

I voted for Maduro, but I concede there was fraud.

Maduro's campaign was exhausting. Ask any tupamaro how hard I worked for the campaign. I went to 5 events with Maduro and 2 in memoriam of Chávez (funeral chapel and the barracks tower at 4F). Few people from Caracas went down to the Vargas Coast campaign closing. Although we were all invited, the event was relatively empty compared to those led by Chávez. The final concentration of the 7 downtown Caracas avenues showed people were tired, with little acceptance of Maduro's personality, comments that we were going to lose the election, comments that many people would vote for Capriles, comments that everyone is sick of those "plugged" into corruption. We Tupas were talking among ourselves and barely watched the screen while Maduro was talking.

Follow up:

Saturday last week I managed to sleep shortly after midnight and I disliked being awakened by the Military tunes at 3 am as I had finally fallen asleep. The memory of my cell phone was filled with messages reminding me that we had to vote. I voted for Maduro, through the tupamaro party option, at 7 am to satisfy Commander Chávez last wish. Then I began to hear reports that the vote was favorable to my cousin and saw opponents with joy and hope, which I did not notice from chavistas during Maduro's campaign. I felt very proud to have been blessed with a cousin such as Henrique who had put so much heart against adversity, and who moved the hopes of many people. During the afternoon I asked God to provide Capriles the opportunity to win as he deserved.

I had a conference call with Electoral National Council staff at 3 pm, which gave an all-day long solid 3% lead, which had persisted throughout the day. At 4 pm I received from the same source that Maduro had increased his votes by 10% to lead with a 7% gap. The fraud consists in lowering the situation created at 4 pm more than half to 1.5% for Maduro, closer to the 3% as when he was losing. The votes outside the country should provide one or two additional percentage points in advantage for Capriles. Each day that passes without a recount, Capriles is gaining popularity among those who voted for Maduro. We are not talking of two halves, but a ruling minority and a majority of Chavez with Capriles. The Simón Bolivar campaign headquarters is keen to adapt and implement the socialist plan of the country that gave us Commander Hugo Chavez, to be applied during the presidency of my cousin Henrique Capriles.

No one should be forced to exercise loyalty and fidelity to officials whose authority comes from the just half of the voters (adjusted for inflation). The suspicion on half or majority opposition votes will be settled after completion of the electoral audit process. The procedure for proposing data, objections or recommendations is being set. This has unleashed a witch hunt to uncover new opponents who are accused of treason. Criminalizing those people who vote according to their mental sovereignty means an ill country. I have been openly identified with the revolution for several years and I have been denied access to work in private companies. Now that I've questioned a specific election issue during recent days, I have been denied access to all activities in which I participated until last week. Both sides are sectarian and they discourage dialogue.

I appeal to both models, socialist and capitalist, of the country to be merged, but that will momentarily horrify the huge majority of the population. Changing government officials is necessary for the revolution, but those who are dismissed will become opposition as well. So the opposition is our new majority. Communal Power structures are monopolized by government militants, but the Communal Power shall also include viable opponents. With its current structure Communal Power will remain the voice of only half of the people. The opposition must participate in Communal power.

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