Venezuela: Rural workers march for Chavez

August 5, 2012

Thousands of peasant workers took to the streets of Caracas on July 26 to hand over a list of programmatic suggestions to the government and show their support for Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

More than 2000 peasant activists from across 18 of Venezuela’s states took part in the march, as well as other members of the national popular movement who attended in solidarity.

The march was the result of months of organisation by the peasant movement, which had held hundreds of grassroots education workshops and peasant political assemblies throughout Venezuela to draft their proposals for the government.

The movement, led by the Bolivar and Ezequiel Zamora Revolutionary Current (CRBZ), hopes that the suggestions will be incorporated into the government’s socialist plan for the nation for 2013-19, which was made public in June.

Orlando Zambrano, spokesperson for the CRBZ said: “This army of men and women, Bolivarian and Zamoranos, we are taking on this historic task. Today we are handing over the proposals of this great debate which we have developed from within our communities, from within our communal councils, from within our communes, and today we see that there is political participation here.”

Some of the main proposals included in the groups’ agenda were to move beyond the “liberal bourgeois state” towards a communal model; to eliminate the problem of bureaucracy and reformism within the revolution, and for ownership over the means of production to become “social” by transferring them over to the popular movement.

After a loud and lively march that began at 9am, activists sang Venezuela’s national anthem and made speeches to the crowd.

During his speech, Zambrano warned other Venezuelan citizens and peoples’ movements across the globe that “North American imperialism” was trying to destabilise the Venezuelan government, as well as to sabotage regional initiatives to unite Latin America such as the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA).

He also said the upcoming Venezuelan elections, due to be held in October, would be a crucial event for global politics.

Zambrano said: “The elections on October 7 represent a historic hope for the people of the world, because the Venezuelan revolution transcends our territory and is an international revolution, and the leadership of Chavez is an international leadership.

“We reject the plans being developed by the Venezuelan counter-revolution ... and if they try to destabilise and launch actions against the process and against the government, they will face a people which are ready to fight.

“Because if there is something we have to be clear on, it’s that this country is ungovernable without the ... president, Hugo Chavez, historic leader of this revolutionary process, which has sown the hopes and dreams of the Venezuelan people.”

On receiving the document on behalf of the government, vice-president of the National Assembly Aristobulo Isturiz said one of the government’s principal goals was to achieve food sovereignty in Venezuela.

Isturiz said: “This involves socialising the large means of production, strengthening the war against monopolies, oligopolies and fundamentally, against the large landed estates ... all of Venezuelan society must be aware of the importance of a redistribution of land to those who work it, so that we can produce food, everybody knows the high price that has been paid by the Venezuelan peasant.”

The elimination of the concentration of land in Venezuela, through large landed estates, is cited as one of the government's objectives in its 2013-2019 plan for the nation.

[Reprinted from Venezuela Analysis.]

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