CARACAS -- Earle Herrera, a delegate to the polemical National Constituent Assembly pushed by Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro, resigned publicly his position as head of a commission, denouncing Maduro and his followers in the process as “sectarian”.
The Maduro administration is still reeling from accusations that the Constituent was elected fraudulently, launched by everybody who isn’t Maduro and his high command, including the company that provided the software and hardware for the July 30th election, the Venezuelan opposition, the Organization of American States, the United States, the Vatican and some other 40-plus countries.
Herrera, a professor of journalism at the Central University of Venezuela (UCV) and author, was until recently an avowed, first-hour chavista. His journalism students at UCV remember him as a disciplined leftwing follower endowed however with a dark sense of humor, and as an above-average professor but one who wasn’t above partying with his students at nearby pubs in the Sabana Grande boulevard in the 1980’s.
“TOO WELL PREPARED”
Sunday, during his weekly TV show (“Kiosko Veraz”, or “Truthful News Kiosk”) on state television network VTV, the professor and Constituent delegate had been reading from an old newspaper article from fellow legendary Venezuelan journalist Eleazar Diaz Rangel, critical of “sectarism” inside “chavismo” when Herrera slowly began building his tirade.
It was like the bit where the TV anchor makes fun of the Dictator in “V from Vendetta”, only more somber and ominous.
After reading Diaz Rangel’s critique of “sectarianism” in “chavismo”, Herrera stopped reading and said: “I am completely in agreement with this…that is why I am putting my Constituent Assembly post at the disposition of the Constituent’s directive.” He hasn’t clarified if he is just resigning that position or the Constituent altogether. Herrera, the veteran political commentator that witnessed and assisted in the rise of Chavez, commented on his own actions: “I think this has to be taken very much in account.” He had started his TV show by seemingly disparaging fellow Constituents. “They are too well prepared, the things I have heard there, well, too rich and fresh,” the veteran professor said.
”I have been in this process (that’s how chavistas call the Bolivarian revolution) since Chavez first appeard on stage, but even if I have been in the Constituent Assembly, I have very little incidence in the decisions of government,” he complained, before twisting the knife: “Had it been otherwise, a lot of people wouldn’t be there (in the Maduro government) who had been there.”
Herrera turning his back on Maduro brings to mind several other high-profile “chavista” defections, most notably that of Attorney General Luisa Ortega Diaz, also a hard-line follower of Hugo Chavez’s legacy, until March, but who is now on the lam, with international warrants out on her and her husband (also a pro-Maduro legislator who turned) after managing to escape Venezuela in a display of derring-do that involved at least four private jets, according to the Maduro-imposed Attorney General Tarek William Saab.