The United Socialist Party of Venezuela is expected to become a solid support to the President’s “revolutionary process”. Foes fear a one-party political system in the Caribbean nation.
As part of the political changes underway after his stunning victory of December 3, Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez has urged his supporters to create an unified “Socialist Party” as a way to block internal discrepancies among more than 20 political organizations that back the “Bolivarian Revolution” launched by the government. According to sources in Caracas, the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), which resembles Communist organizations in the East during the Cold War era, will be ready in 2007.
After New Year festivities, organizations linked to the Chavez’s led Bloque del Cambio will analyze the formation of a unity party “able to back revolutionary transformations in the nation”, as publicly demanded by the President. The structure of the new body emerges from the grassroots after Hugo Chavez urged to keep the groups composing the Miranda Command task force, which helped out with the presidential election.
Chavez’s foes see the decision as part of broader attempt masterminded by the President to eliminate political activities in Venezuela, including the opposition. The new party will have a centralized command and his authorities will be elected among the prominent members of the government.
After winning the presidential vote by a wide margin, Chavez commented that he was studying a way to restructure “the architecture of the State”, as well as new changes to the current Constitution promoted by him in 1999. Among other proposals, Chavez anticipated that he aims to introduce the possibility of unlimited reelections for the President, as well as sanctions to political parties that do not fulfill the electoral law. Sanctions could eventually lead to the prohibit the activities of the punished parties
Several political forces linked to the head of state already announced their dissolution to join the new party, among them Venezuelan Popular Unity, the Fifth Republic and Peoples Electoral movements Meanwhile, the Communist, Homeland for All and PODEMOS parties activated processes to define participation.
Some leaders from the political parties supporting Chavez accepted the decision of the leader without further comments. “We have nothing to say. The decision has been taken”, said Elvis Amoroso, a prominent member of the Fifth Republic Movement.
At the same time, independent voices that usually back the President’s policies are rising in Venezuela against the imposed proposal. “We cannot rule out internal democracy in the name of unity”, said Rafael Uzcategui, Secretary of the Homeland for All Party. He also added that the unification will be discussed in a general assembly of his political force.