Venezuelan NGOs Call for Reflection and Dialogue

Fifty-six Venezuelan organizations say: On December 6 there was a vote for democracy, the wellbeing of the population, and respectful coexistence

[The original Spanish version of this document can be read in the PROVEA web page]

Following the December 6 elections, the social and human rights organizations signing this document express the following:

1) We congratulate Venezuelan society for its exemplary civic behavior, which ratified the electoral path as the way for peaceful participation and expression of opinions. This behavior allowed for an election day that was democratic and without serious incident.

2) We congratulate the deputies elected by popular vote and we wish them success in office. You have received a clear mandate: to propose a legislative agenda that addresses the main problems affecting people and which will allow for the recovery and full validity of human rights through democratic agreements. This is a mandate that allows the redemption of the institutional role of the National Assembly.

3) This is an opportunity for debates and other functions of the National Assembly to be carried out transparently, with the collaboration of public and private media, which should provide information for all citizens. The Parliament must recover its basic function of representing the voices and interests of all the Venezuelan population, without discrimination.

4) We think the results of these elections should also be read as a clear message against an authoritarian, arrogant, and discriminatory way of running the government. In order to face the acute social crisis affecting most of the Venezuelan population, President Nicolás Maduro, and the rest of the authorities of the public powers should begin a deep process of self-revision and should establish channels of dialogue and communication with all sectors of the country.

5) A good start would be to immediately end the state of exception and the “Operations for the Liberation of the People,” which have caused serious violations of human rights in communities where they have been applied. As well, political prisoners should be freed and citizens that are still under judicial procedures following the arbitrary detentions during the social protests of 2013, 2014, and 2015, should have their charges dismissed. Officials of Venezuela’s public powers are responsible for the social crisis affecting the country; they are therefore responsible for its solution. It is time for those authorities to face their responsibility instead of diverting the attention away from those causes. Political, plural, and democratic dialogue has become imperative, and all sectors of Venezuelan civil society should participate.

6) We regret that during December 6 several high officials of the national executive, including President Nicolás Maduro, committed open violations of the election rules. We reject the omission by the authorities of the National Electoral Council of numerous irregularities denounced by voters during the process. The National Electoral Council should recover its role as an impartial referee, serving all citizens and not a political faction. We also deplore the information unbalance in the Public Media National System and of all its channels. The Public Media National System as well, should serve the entire country.

7) The civic, pacific and democratic elections day by which the Venezuelan people sent a message against the exclusion and intolerance of the government, demonstrates that we can all agree as a country to reinforce democracy, coexistence, and the exercise of human rights. Our organizations will promote tolerance and inclusion in the design of public policies which guarantee human dignity.

Organizations signing this document:

1.     Acción Campesina

2.     Acción Solidaria en VIH/Sida

3.     Asociación Civil Asamblea de Educación

4.     Asociación Civil María Estrella de la Mañana

5.     Asociación Civil Perijá

6.     Asociación Civil Uniandes

7.     Aval, Asociación Venezolana de Amigos con Linfoma

8.     Banco del Libro

9.     Cáritas Ciudad Bolívar

10.  Cátedra de Derechos Humanos de la Universidad Centroccidental Lisandro Alvarado

11.  Cátedra de la Paz y Derechos Humanos Mons. Oscar A. Romero / Universidad de Los Andes

12.  Centro de Animación Juvenil

13.  Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Universidad de Margarita

14.  Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Universidad Metropolitana

15.  Centro para la Paz y los Derechos Humanos de la Universidad Central de Venezuela

16.  Cepaz, Centro de Justicia y Paz

17.  Civilis Derechos Humanos

18.  Codevida, Coalición de Organizaciones por el Derecho a la Salud y a la Vida

19.  Codhez, Comisión para los Derechos Humanos del Estado Zulia

20.  Comisión de Derechos Humanos de la Federación de Abogados de Venezuela del estado Bolívar

21.  Comité Paz y Vida

22.  Convite AC

23.  Escuela de Vecinos de Venezuela

24.  Espacio Público

25.  Fenasopadres, Federación Nacional de Sociedades de Padres y Representantes

26.  FEPAP

27.  Foro Penal

28.  Fuccam, Fundación Falcón Unida Contra el Cáncer de Mama

29.  Funcamama, Fundación de Lucha contra el Cáncer de Mama de Carabobo

30.  Fundación Aguaclara

31.  Fundaval, Fundación Asesoría Venezuela y América Latina

32.  Fundación Reflejos de Venezuela

33.  Fundación Tierra Viva

34.  Funpaz, Asociación Civil Fuerza, Unión, Justicia, Solidaridad y Paz

35.  Grupo de Trabajo sobre Asuntos Indígenas de la Universidad de Los Andes

36.  Inede, Instituto Neoespartano de Defensa Legal

37.  Instituto Venezolano de Estudios Sociales y Políticos (INVESP)

38.  Ipys Venezuela

39.  Laboratorio de Paz

40.  Observatorio de Derechos Humanos de las Mujeres

41.  Observatorio de Derechos Humanos de la Universidad de los Andes

42.  Observatorio Venezolano de Conflictividad Social

43.  OVS, Observatorio Venezolano de Salud

44.  Padres Organizados de Venezuela

45.  Provea, Programa Venezolano de Educación-Acción en Derechos Humanos

46.  Red Rosa, Red Venezolana de Lucha Contra el Cáncer de Mama

47.  Red Tolerancia

48.  Redes Ayuda

49.  Redhnna, Red por los Derechos Humanos de Niños, Niñas y Adolescentes

50.  Seno & Vida

51.  Senos Saludables del estado Bolívar

52.  Senosalud

53.  Senosayuda

54.  Sinergia, Asociación Venezolana de Organizaciones de Sociedad Civil

55.  Sociedad Hominis Iura

56.  Unión Vecinal para la Participación Ciudadana