Bogota, November 29, 2017 (venezuelanalysis.com) – Venezuela’s National Constituent Assembly (ANC) has denied permission to one of its grassroots delegates to stand as a mayoral candidate in upcoming December 10 municipal elections.
Angel Prado was elected to the ANC on July 30 as a territorial delegate for his municipality of Simon Planas, and is also a leading member of the El Maizal commune in Lara state. For the past several weeks, he has been involved in a lengthy battle with Venezuela’s electoral authorities to have his mayoral candidacy for the Simon Planas municipality recognized.
On Monday, he and approximately 1000 communal activists from his home-state of Lara traveled to Caracas to protest outside the ANC, after the state office of the National Electoral Council said he would need the assembly's authorization to stand. However, 48 hours into the demonstration, Prado told his followers that the ANC leadership had definitively “blocked” his candidacy.
The ANC has not made public its reasons for disallowing Prado’s candidacy, while critics point out that several other ANC delegates will stand in the upcoming elections.
Prado was to go head to head with the official handpicked candidate for the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), and has the support of ten neighboring communes, as well as a petition signed by 9000 people in his community.
Former Communes Minister and Venezuelan public intellectual Reinaldo Iturriza called the ANC’s decision a “defeat” for all of Chavismo in a post on Twitter.
Pueden decir lo que les dé la gana o pueden guardar silencio. Pero ésta es una derrota para todo el chavismo. https://t.co/CVWNz9jVbO
— Reinaldo Iturriza L (@ReinaldoI) November 28, 2017
The decision by the bulk of Venezuelan opposition parties to officially boycott the upcoming elections has opened up spaces in certain municipalities for grassroots movements to field alternative candidates to those put forward by the PSUV. Nonetheless, they have met significant resistance from both the CNE and the governing socialist party.
Following the announcement of the decision, Prado told his supporters that he would now dedicate his efforts to building the “Communal City of El Maizal” in his municipality.