By Luis Manuel Aguana
In the best style of the monarch Louis XIV of France with his famous phrase ” State is me “, Venezuelans will now have to say ” “The 333 is me “. Each Venezuelan must urgently express “I assume the defense of the constitution” in the terms of Article 333: “Article 333: This Constitution shall not lose its validity if it ceases to be observed by force or because it is abrogated by any other means other than that provided for therein. In such an eventuality, every citizen invested invested or not invested with authority, shall have the duty to collaborate in the re-establishment of its effective validity“. (emphasis added)
In this way, personally, I have assumed this commitment by denouncing by this means that the National Assembly, in a contrived interpretation of the Constitution, on January 15, 2019 promulgated an “Agreement on the declaration of usurpation of the Presidency of the Republic by Nicolás Maduro Moros and the re-establishment of the validity of the Constitution” (see Agreement in http://www.asambleanacional.gob.ve/actos/_acuerdo-sobre-la-declaratoria-de-usurpacionde-la-presidencia-de-la-republica-por-parte-de-nicolas-maduro-moros-y-el-restablecimiento-de-la-vigenciade-la-constitucion) where they hijacked Article 333, interpreting it in their favor, and instead of collaborating in the re-establishment of the effective validity of the constitution, they used it in an undue manner to attribute to themselves the constitutional powers of the President of the Republic, thus mocking the possibility that Venezuelans would have a President in Charge with full powers as of January 10, 2019. He also prevented the legitimate Supreme Court of Justice from appointing a President in Charge of the Republic through this legal artifice.
By evading the appointment of a President in charge of the Republic, he violated powers that are incompatible with the functions of Parliament. In accordance with the principle of separation of powers, the National Assembly as an institution could not assume the constitutional functions and powers of the President of the Republic, nor could its President serve as President in charge of the Republic at the same time. The Assembly is the controller par excellence of the Executive Power. That would be like paying and giving change. Upon assuming the functions as President in Charge of the Republic on January 23, Juan Guaidó is obliged to resign immediately as President of the National Assembly and assume 100% of its competencies, but is now mediated by the parties and by its unconstitutional Agreement.
Now, you’ll say, why is this guy worrying about that now if the National Assembly is trying to get a transition in place as soon as possible? And the answer is that it is precisely achieving EVERYTHING THE COUNTERWISE by violating the constitution, using the referred Agreement as an illegal refuge to, according to its judgment, restore the validity of the Constitution. It is not possible to restore the constitution in violation of it and even worse, using precisely as an argument the article that says that all Venezuelans, whether or not they are invested with authority, should contribute to the re-establishment of its validity, but not by leaving it but by acting within it. That is why, as a citizen not invested with authority, I exercise my right of controlling vigilance to collaborate for its effective restoration. The 333 is me!
This looks like a lawyer’s jargon, but it’s not. Juan Guaidó is operating as the executor of that Agreement of the National Assembly and not as President in Charge of the Republic. Hence the appointments made so far are framed within the Political Agreement of the National Assembly and not the result of the decisions of a President in Charge of the Republic. The two conditions are essentially different, and in some cases exclusionary, and of course have different consequences.
And you’ll tell me, and what’s the problem? In the first place, the National Assembly is operating in a sort of legal limbo where the decisions of the President in Charge have been hijacked. Guaidó is not governing, who governs is the top of the G4 within the National Assembly, which is very different. The Venezuelan people gave Juan Guaidó and no one else power on January 23, 2019. He did not give it to Henry Ramos Allup, nor to Julio Borges, nor to Manuel Rosales, nor to Leopoldo López, he gave it to Juan Guaidó. What a difference.
This legal adefesio by which they are half governing – because Maduro is still in Miraflores – is allowing those amnesty negotiations to take place with the regime through that law that now administers – oh surprise! – Democratic Action through the first Vice President of the AN/Henry Ramos Allup, who was the one who said we had to stall the regime in a transition, how about that? Who will be forgiven and how much will it cost? This has allowed the speed of exit from Maduro’s regime, which we all saw outside last weekend, to have slowed down, and people have been appointed as Ambassadors who, respecting their honorable status as Venezuelans and except for honorable exceptions, do not have the most absolute experience in the functions entrusted to them. They are again political quotas of distribution, to the oldest and most rancid custom of the parties. Until when?!! Wasn’t 20 years of suffering enough? Didn’t they learn anything? Maduro in the middle of this delivery game gains time and stays. Already the ex-con of the illegal TSJ of Baralt Avenue is soon inventing a serious move against Guaidó, and time continues to pass.
Are you realizing why it is absolutely important for Juan Guaidó to assume his responsibilities as President in Charge of the Republic, and name from his most absolute conscience the team that will accompany him, starting with a new Military High Command, assuming full responsibility for what happens? But that will not be so until one of two things happens: that this unconstitutional agreement is denounced and repealed by the legitimate Supreme Court of Justice, or Juan Guaidó puts his four balls and sends the National Assembly to hell and governs as God commands. I hope the second thing happens because it is the fastest, and because if anyone is at risk here it is precisely him. The one who is appearing as responsible before the Venezuelans for that negotiated transition they are making with that Agreement, is Juan Guaidó.
If Venezuela comes out of these delinquents it is because God in his infinite mercy is protecting us, and not precisely because of the decisions of those who lead the process. Thanks to Him a young man with zero mileage in Venezuelan politics is at the forefront. The only thing he has to guide him is his love for Venezuela, his conscience and his determination. If he does not use them, he will be eaten alive by the rottenest of the political class that accompanies him. All of us must then be the 333 and prevent him from being eaten…
Caracas, 29 January 2019