Opposition in Venezuela unable to nominate candidate for upcoming presidential election

The Democratic Unitary Platform in Venezuela has expressed outrage over being unable to register their candidate, Corina Yoris, to challenge President Nicolas Maduro in the upcoming presidential elections. Despite efforts to register Yoris before the deadline, the coalition claims they were blocked from doing so, leading to concerns from neighboring states about the fairness of the electoral process. They have called for the registry to be reopened, citing a violation of the right of Venezuelans to vote for change.

Corina Yoris, an 80-year-old academic, was chosen as the PUD candidate by Maria Corina Machado, the leader of the Vente Venezuela party. Yoris’ relative anonymity and clean record have contributed to her appeal among voters, with her name being seen as a connection to Machado. Despite facing obstacles in registering for the election, polls indicate that Maduro would lose by a landslide if Venezuelan voters were given a fair choice. To date, 10 candidates have registered for the election, but none are seen as a serious threat to Maduro’s power base.

The National Electoral Council announced that Manuel Rosales, governor of Zulia state, had officially registered for the election through automated means. However, there has been no comment on Yoris’s eligibility to run from the Venezuelan Ministry of Popular Power for Communication and Information. The inability of the PUD candidate to register has raised concerns among countries such as Argentina, Costa Rica, and Ecuador, who have expressed their worries over the fairness of the electoral process in Venezuela.

Maduro has been engaging in negotiations with the United States over electoral guarantees in exchange for relief from oil sanctions. However, Washington has warned that oil sanctions will expire in April if Venezuela does not allow free and fair elections. Last week, two people close to Machado were arrested, leading to international outcry and further skepticism about the government’s commitment to democratic processes. The situation in Venezuela remains tense as the country prepares for the upcoming presidential elections, with the opposition facing challenges in fielding a viable candidate to challenge Maduro’s power.