Migrant Venezuelans stand for rights
CONCERNED about political crisis and economic collapse in their home country, Venezuelans living in Townsville have met to cast their votes in an unofficial referendum.
The popular consultation was called by Venezuela’s National Assembly in opposition to President Nicolas Maduro’s proposed Constitutional Assembly.
Townsville referendum co- ordinator Alejandra Hernandez, from Caracas, said the proposed Constitutional Assembly threatened democracy in the country.
“The government has decided to make this change without consulting ( the people) first about whether they want it or not,” she said.
“The referendum is to actually to say that we don’t want to make that change and to ask the government to establish again the democracy and the civil rights in our country.”
The Venezuelan president has faced criticism for mishandling the economy, with food and medicine in critically short supply.
“There are people dying from starvation and a high percentage of the population is eating from the garbage,” Ms Hernandez said.
“My grandparents don’t have medication for high blood pressure and dementia.
“You have no idea how hard it is to be here, knowing that they’re going through that situation.”
This year 108 people have died in Venezuelan protests.
Voting booths are being opened across Australia, with Townsville’s opened yesterday at Cafe de Colombia on Charters Towers Rd.
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