Venezuelan opposition will form a unity government
VENEZUELA’S opposition yesterday said it would name a new Supreme Court and work on forming a unity government as it unveiled a new stage of its offensive against President Nicolas Maduro.
It follows an unofficial referendum that the opposition hailed as a major blow against his Socialist “regime”.
Announcing the “Zero Hour” campaign, Freddy Guevara, vice-president of the opposition-led National Assembly, said Venezuelans had delivered an overwhelming mandate for change in Sunday’s consultation vote, in which 7.6million people cast ballots in defiance of a government that branded it illegal. “If the regime insists on ignoring the decision of the Venezuelans, we will do everything to make it respect sovereignty,” Mr Guevara said, vowing to stop “the destruction of the country being cemented”.
A nationwide strike will also be held on Thursday, although it is unlikely the public sector will participate.
The referendum, which came after three months of protests that have claimed at least 90 lives, asked voters to back three proposals: to block Mr Maduro’s July 30 vote to form an alternative people’s assembly; to call on the armed forces to defend the constitution and the opposition-led parliament; and to form a unity government ahead of fresh elections.
Some 98 per cent voted in favour of the proposals, though the referendum was largely boycotted by government supporters and branded “meaningless” by Mr Maduro. Yesterday senior Chavistas alleged widespread fraud in the vote, even as governments across the region and beyond urged him to acknowledge the result.