[6/22/17/ SABRINA MARTIN] Venezuela’s opposition has announced it will be installing a parallel government outside the influence of current President and dictator Nicolás Maduro.
President of the Venezuelan National Assembly Julio Borges announced at a press conference that they will be writing up a new governmental agreement, which was published on social media soon after.
“We assume a commitment to appoint new public powers and create a new government empowered by article 333 of the constitution,” the document, published by Congressman Freddy Guevara, said.
The opposition has declared itself “in disobedience” of the current administration in order to establish this new parallel government, based on article 333 and 350 of the country’s constitution.
Article 333: This Constitution shall not cease to be in effect if it ceases to be observed due to acts of force or because or repeal in any manner other than as provided for herein. In such eventuality, every citizen, whether or not vested with official authority, has a duty to assist in bringing it back into actual effect.
Article 350: The people of Venezuela, true to their republican tradition and their struggle for independence, peace and freedom, shall disown any regime, legislation or authority that violates democratic values, principles and guarantees or encroaches upon human rights.
In addition to installing new public powers in Venezuela and ignoring the Constituent Assembly being organized by Maduro, the opposition said it will call for a general strike and continued peaceful protests, including sit-ins and marches.
How to install a new government?
Some experts said the move will serve less as the creation of a “parallel government” and more as the restitution of previously existing government institutions.
Constitutional lawyer Jose Vicente Haro said the first thing the National Assembly should do is name new directors to run the National Electoral Council, Ombudsman as well as new judges for the Supreme Court.
Vicente said the National Assembly must also resume operations, with a priority on completing charges against Maduro’s adminsitration that were cut off in January, as well as organizing elections.
He said the situation “is not very encouraging” because Maduro’s regime may continue to ignore policies implemented by the National Assembly or, as in any dictatorship, imprison opposition members.
“They could go to prison for defending the constitution,” he said. “Threats exist, that’s nothing new.