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Justin Delacour comes to rescue his Venezuelan idol...

By Aleksander Boyd

London 28.11.04 | So I see that Justin Delacour (a gringo interfering in our affairs) is trying to save Chavez' face based upon two affirmations made by advocates of the regime. This is the first time that someone, apart from Elio Cequea and some other dodgy chavista, try to sort of prove that I am wrong in saying that Sumate has not breached any laws of the land. Since Delacour's ignorance in this issue is, as in any other related to Venezuela, outstanding, I shall provide a legal explanation that, yet again, demonstrates that the regime is prosecuting Sumate on trumped up charges.

Article 132 of the Penal Code:

Artículo 132.- Cualquiera que, dentro o fuera del territorio nacional, conspire para destruir la forma política republicana que se ha dado la Nación será castigado con presidio de ocho a dieciséis años.

En la misma pena incurrirá el venezolano que solicitare la intervención extranjera en los asuntos de la política interior de Venezuela, o pidiere su concurso para trastornar la paz de la República o que ante sus funcionarios, o por publicaciones hechas en la prensa extranjera, incitare a la guerra civil en la República o difamare a su Presidente o ultrajare al Representante diplomático o a los funcionarios consulares de Venezuela, por razón de sus funciones, en el país donde se cometiere el hecho.

For the language impaired:

He/she who, within or outside the national territorial confines, conspires to destroy the republican political system of the nation will be castigated with 8 to 16 years imprisonment.

The same shall apply to the Venezuelan who were to solicit foreign intervention in the internal political affairs of the republic, or demands foreign concourse to alter the peace of the republic, or that before the republic's civil servants by way of publications in foreign media, incites civil war in the republic, or defamates its president or offends the diplomatic representative or the consular staff of Venezuela, by reason of the performance of their duties, in the country where the deed were to take place.

Delacour then goes on to another 'proof' provided by Eva Golinger. Golinger's links to the regime void the possibility to take her grand stand seriously. In the past Golinger has been contracted by Venezuela's government for the provision of certain legal work -even though at the time she was not a properly registered attorney; has been flown to media conferences at the expense of the Venezuelan taxpayer and extraordinary protective measures have been granted to her political persona, whilst visiting Venezuela. Building on that, Golinger adventures into subjectively wild interpretations when affirming that Sumate's case is "currently in the hands of the independent Attorney General's office".

As any person aware of the current political turmoil should know, Venezuela's Attorney General is anything but independent. He was appointed directly by Chavez, utilising illegal and unconstitutional mechanisms in 1.999. The role of the Attorney General's office in any democracy is to keep a constant check upon the executive and other branches of power. In Venezuela though, Isaias Rodriguez (attorney general) has not denounced the neofascist leader nor its administration even once. His time has been devoted entirely to prosecute the 'enemies of the revolution' as the president constantly refers to those who oppose him.

The attorney general's office first indicted Sumate's directors on charges of treason based on the aforementioned article of the Penal Code. Exploiting the findings of NED’s financing to Sumate ‘unearthed’ by Golinger, the attorney set out to prosecute the latter’s directors. However, as it is no crime in our laws to accept foreign funds, grants or contributions by NGOs, the attorney had to modify the charges presented to maladministration of received funds.

Sumate received according to Golinger’s website $200.000. I took the pain to confront her recently owing to the statements given by the daft information minister Andres Izarra, whereby he alleged that Golinger’s findings pointed at Sumate having received $25 million from the NED, USAID and others. To my questioning of the massive discrepancy between the two amounts Golinger replied:

“Boyd: the reason I put the $200,000 figure was because the total grant from DAI/USAID to Súmate was about $150,000 - but a little less that half was put by DAI for the project - Súmate probably benefited from that money too. In any case, I can accept a miscalculation there and go for the $138,240 figure since that is the most straightforward”.

The $138.240 figure was proposed by me after adding the NED grant and the DAI/USAID as reported in Golinger’s website. Furthermore Golinger disprove the information minister by writing in an email to me:

“Boyd: I never said that no have I presented information a such. USAID has given approximately $25 million to political activities, but up until now, the only information pertaining to Súmate is the NED $53,400 grant and the USAID $84,480 grant. I have never stated otherwise nor am I responsible for other's misstatements”.

Neither Golinger, nor Izarra have modified the misleading allegations in public.

Going back to the legal aspects of the case, it is worth clarifying a few points. Firstly the body of laws of Venezuela, as in any other country governed by a civil legal system, is hierarchical. As such the first and foremost legislation of the country is the constitution. We then have the organic laws and presidential decrees, ordinary laws, decrees and norms and regulations. The constitution has got some very interesting definitions worth attending:

Article 3: The essential purposes of the State are the protection and development of the individual and respect for the dignity of the individual, the democratic exercise of the will of the people, the building of a just and peace-loving society, the furtherance of the prosperity and welfare of the people and the guaranteeing of the Fulfillment of the principles, rights and duties established in this Constitution.

Article 5: Sovereignty resides untransferable in the people, who exercise it directly in the manner provided for in this Constitution and in the law, and indirectly, by suffrage, through the organs exercising Public Power. The organs of the State emanate from and are subject to the sovereignty of the people.

Article 28: Anyone has the right of access to the information and data concerning him or her or his or her goods which are contained in official or private records, with such exceptions as may be established by law, as well as what use is being made of the same and the purpose thereof, and to petition the court of competent competence for the updating, correction or destruction of any records that are erroneous or unlawfully 'affect the petitioner's right. He or she may, as well, access documents of any nature containing information of interest to communities or group of persons. The foregoing is without prejudice to the confidentiality of sources from which information is received by journalist, or secrecy in other professions as may be determined by law.

Article 72: All magistrates and other offices filled by popular vote are subject to revocation.

Once half of the term of office to which an official has been elected has elapsed, a number of voters constituting at least 20% of the voters registered in the pertinent circumscription may extend a petition for the calling of a referendum to revoke such official's mandate.

When a number of voters equal to or greater than the number of those who elected the official vote in favor of revocation, provided that a number of voters equal to or greater than 25% of the total number of registered voters* have voted in the revocation election, the official’s mandate shall be deemed revoked, and immediate action shall be taken to fill the permanent vacancy in accordance with the provided for in this Constitution and by law.

The revocation of the mandate for the collegiate bodies shall be performed in accordance with the law. During the term to which the official was elected, only one petition to recall may be filed.

Article 333: This Constitution shall not cease to be in effect if it ceases to be observed due to acts of force or because or repeal in any manner other than as provided for herein.
In such eventuality, every citizen, whether or not vested with official authority, has a duty to assist in bringing it back into actual effect.

Article 334: All of the judges of the Republic, within their respective spheres of competence and in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution and law, are obligated to ensure the integrity of the Constitution.

Article 350: The people of Venezuela, true to their republican tradition and their struggle for independence, peace and freedom, shall disown any regime, legislation or authority that violates democratic values, principles and guarantees or encroaches upon human rights.

Sumate actions have been construed by the regime’s advocates as the endeavours of a political party. Political parties’ activities are regulated in another law entitled “Ley de Partidos Politicos, Reuniones Publicas y Manifestaciones” Law of Political Parties, Public Meetings and Rallies”. According to section 4 of article 25 of said law, political parties are “forbidden to accept donations or subsidies from: public entities, autonomous or otherwise; from foreign companies or companies whose HQs are abroad; from contracting companies in the provision of services of any nature to the State; from foreign nations and from foreign political parties”. However Sumate is no political party, hence this allegation –as all the others, is preposterous. Gregory Wilpert has claimed that Sumate’s crime has been to produce a parallel electoral database, which again is a solecism. Curiously enough none of the paid advocates of the regime appears to be aware of the illegal publishing of personal voting data in the website of Luis Tascon, Assemblyman for the ruling party MVR. Said data was given to him by the CNE. Had Sumate’s receipt of monies as a political party, which is not, be taken as illegal, they also conveniently forgot to mention the acceptance of $1.5 million from the Spanish financial group BBVA by Chavez and his MVR.

The Organic Law of Electoral Power establishes the creation of the National Finance Office responsible to supervise electoral matters related to propaganda and financing of political parties. The Organic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation cites in its article 202 that “candidates and political parties cannot accept anonymous contributions” [sic]. Ergo both an ordinary and an organic law deal with the issue of what funds from which origin can be legally accepted by political parties. Again, Sumate is not a political party but a civil NGO, are there any explicit prohibitions as to the acceptance by NGOs of funds foreign or otherwise? The answer is a rotund NO. Moreover as acceptance of foreign monies is not explicitly prohibited in the Organic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation nor in the Organic Law of the Electoral Power, as long as is duly reported with the National Finance Office, it comes as a shock to see that the attorney general did not prosecute Hugo Chavez for having accepted and failed to declare $1.5 million in 1999. Notice of this was only possible due to the investigations into money laundering activities of the BBVA conduced by Spanish justice of the Royal National Audience, Baltasar Garzon. To date no legal action has been taken against either Chavez or his MVR party in that respect.

Venezuelans have the duty and the constitutional right to disown any regime, legislation or authority that violates democratic values, principles and guarantees or encroaches upon human rights. Are there any doubts as to what the credentials of neofascist Chavez are in regards to respect for human rights, democratic values and constitutional principles?

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