'Dictator' Chavez to rule by decree
Wednesday 15 December 2010
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has moved to bypass parliament and govern by decree for one year, prompting opposition charges that he was acting like a dictator.
Having used such powers three times during his 11-year rule, the Socialist leader says he needs them again to respond to a national emergency caused by floods that have left more than 130,000 homeless.
"He's winning time with the tragedy to put limits on the new National Assembly," said opposition politician Pastora Medina. "He is consolidating himself as a dictator, going above the [institutional powers] to govern."
A freshly united opposition coalition won about half the popular vote in a September parliamentary election to take 40 per cent of seats in a new National Assembly that will convene on 5 January, when they hoped to put a check on Mr Chavez's power.
But in a move to outflank them – and with an eye on the next presidential vote in 2012 – Mr Chavez yesterday asked the outgoing Assembly, dominated by his ruling Socialist Party, to grant him fast-track decree powers. He said the powers could extend for up to 18 months.
A leading opposition newspaper Tal Cual denounced the move – along with a package of laws being rushed through to entrench the President's "21st-century socialism" – as a "totalitarian ambush".
- 1 Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 4 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
- 5 Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
The City of the Monkey God: Archaeologists claim to have found city lost for 1,000 years in remote Honduran jungle
Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway amid dense fog
Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
London property boom built on dirty money
Becky Watts: Stepbrother and his girlfriend named locally as two arrested on suspicion of murder
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm are focussed on assis...
£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A vacancy has arisen for a General Processor ...
£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Full time and Part time positio...