Yesterday, the Venezuelan people voted in favor of lifting the term limits in office for elected officials. The winning margin was clear cut for Chavez, 94% of the people went to voting booths and 54% voted in favor. In 2007 Chavez lost a similar referendum, where he asked the people to vote on lifting the term limits only for him and not for all elected officials. Thus the president changed the terms of the vote in order to persuade the voters.
Following this vote, Chavez will be able to run for a third term in 2012. In this post i don't intend to minimize the achievements of the Bolivarian revolution led by Chavez, especially in terms of poverty alleviation, advancements into socialism, rendering Venezuela a regional power and protesting the Gringo(American) domination. Also the success of Chavez amongst the Venezuelan population has spurred reactions all over the Latin American continent leaning more and more to the left, we could talk about the election of Evo Morales in Bolivia, and Mrs Kirchner in Argentina who admires Chavez.
Nevertheless, i think that this referendum is dangerous to the future of the Bolivarian Revolution. In a matter of fact, by running again in 2012 Chavez is implicitly or explicitly saying that he is indispensable for the revolution to succeed, this by itself marks a failure. In fact, no successful revolution depends on one man! Hugo Chavez ought to learn from the failures of his predecessors all over the world: many revolutions, and social reforms have failed because they depended on one man who built upon himself a personality cult.
Hugo Chavez and all the leaders in Latin America who claim to be progressive ought not to reject the democratic process who brought them into power. The revolution should be institutionalized and not personalized, Chavez has to pave the way for others who can sustain the revolution. Otherwise it will end up like any other, a disaster! The Cuban revolution is now at an impasse after the illness of Fidel Castro. How many mistakes do we have to make in order to learn?
For more insigths read this article.
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