Congress okays billionaire provision for Chávez's election campaign
According to Deputy Tomás Guanipa, some USD 35 million has been approved for stationery
Opposition Congressman Tomás Guanipa is at odds with the approval by the National Assembly (AN) of an amount higher than USD 232 million for the Ministry of Information and Communication and the National Public Media System (SNMP).
"Unbelievable that Venezuelans' money is used to inflate the budget of that ministry by granting it twofold last year amount, even so in the middle of the election campaign. It is a billionaire allocation to enhance sponsorship of the President of the Republic," he lamented.
Guanipa remembered that the use of public monies for electioneering is an offense, under Venezuelan laws.
The Deputy told El Universal during an interview that the endorsed funds envisage "wacky items that, on top of all that, are discretionary." According to the congressman, more than USD 93 million are to cover administrative expenses; about USD 35 million for stationery; another millionaire provision is for TV and radio show Aló Presidente, and "the show is not even on air."
José Vicente Rangel clearly said: "We are not conducting negotiations threatened with a gun in the head." He warned behind closed doors in the midst of the social upheaval occurred during the oil strike in 2002 and 2003. Dissenting Timoteo Zambrano answered back that no other option was available: "The thing is that otherwise, you do not negotiate."