CNN journalist Patricia Janiot: "The region has its eyes on this election"
"The objective is to add the greatest amount of elements to compose a good story," the Colombian journalist asserts
Colombian journalist Patricia Janiot, who has been the main anchorwoman at news network CNN en Español for 20 years, is landing in Venezuela to cover every detail of the October 7 presidential election. From the CNN headquarters in Atlanta, USA, Janiot has agreed to change places and sit at the interviewee seat.
How do you get ready for the Venezuelan presidential election coverage? Pro-government sectors have attacked CNN several times...
We all expect everything goes well. It will be like the other times we have covered elections. We are very careful when we report about Venezuela because we know we have two very polarized audiences. The issue is that we often find difficulties to get access to official sources, because they are reluctant to talk to the press. Being public officials, it is difficult to reach them. The best way to deal with polarization is to include the two views within the country; to take into account both political groups without taking sides.
What kind of information are you looking for?
The objective is to add the greatest amount of elements to compose a good story. If we get a substantial amount of remarks from candidates, analysts, officials, pollsters, and people on the streets, we will be satisfied. And if on top of that, we get an interview with the winner of the election the following day, it would be the icing on the cake.
What draws your attention about both candidates?
I believe that they are very close to the people. Politicians have got off that pedestal of distant and unreachable men, and have placed themselves at the same level as the ordinary citizens. I like the colorful atmosphere of the Venezuelan electoral campaign. You see a very passionate electorate, more than in other countries. This election seems very balanced depending on the surveys you look at. That makes everything more interesting. That is going to make people feel more committed to go to the polls. It will be a peaceful election day with long lines, as it has always been every time we have come to cover elections.
Of course, this is not your first time covering elections in Venezuela...
I have visited Venezuela many times. It is a neighboring country that has set a political trend within the continent and the region has its eyes on this election.
Where do you think Latin America is heading towards?
I would like Latin America to head towards any ideology that fights against poverty, respects liberties and rights, brings progress and employment to people, invests in infrastructure, respects private property, and allows entrepreneurs to carry out their projects. Whether is right, left, or center, it seems to me that the aim is the same, but the methods are different.
Translated by Andreína Trujillo
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."