Valencia’s bad streak

Mayor Edgardo Parra: Even his office walls are red!

Valencia has seen its share of troubles lately: The construction of their subway is paralysed, their drinking water is contaminated with aluminum, their streets are filled with garbage and the local government is facing a lengthy budget crisis. Could things get even worse for Venezuela’s third city?

Yes. Four City Treasury check books, with 110 signed checks, just went “missing”.

Though the criminal police is already on the case, there are doubts that the checkbooks (worth a million of Bs.F  or a “milliardo” in the old currency) will ever be found, given the fact that the city council refused to discuss the case early on. The public pressure forced them to create a investigative commission. However the president of the council thinks this is only a case of “bank fraud”.

What’s really going on over there? Is this a streak of bad luck or a small part of a vast Imperialist conspiracy? No. In the end, it’s in part just another example of bad governance, personified in part by current mayor of Valencia, Edgardo Parra. After his unexpected victory in the 2008 election (thanks to an opposition split), he has devoted his time more to harrassing local journalists than to solving the problems of the city.

But not all the blame falls on Mr. Parra’s shoulders. Valencia, like other municipalities around the country, is just another victim of a longrunning campaign taken by the central government to drastically curtail their sources of income and their capacity to get things done. The new reform to the Law of the Federal Council of Government (passed by decree, through the Enabling Law) allows the President to create new legal structures and bypass Governors and Mayors.

In the meantime, Mr. Parra got into a new conflict with the public transportation sector, just to backdown days later. But even if he’s defeated at the polls in April of 2013, his succesor and the people of Valencia will still face difficult times ahead.

8 thoughts on “Valencia’s bad streak

  1. Good job, Gustavo. Poor Valencia… if we had strong property rights, this subway thing wouldn’t be so painful. How many jobs lost thanks to the subway? In 2008, I thought we couldn’t be worse already.
    Mr. Parra is the very representation that you can always be worse.

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    • And the worst part is that he won thanks to the split of the oppostion, because Governor Salas Feo insisted then to run with his own candidate, instead to support the other, more popular choice.

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      • …which is just a symptom of a deeper problem, the voting system. Paired voting systems would prevent such non representative results.

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      • That’s not the whole story. ProVe had a candidate Julio Castillo, who was more popular than Cocciola. Suddenly, an attorney from IMECA (Cocciola’s company) filed a motion to the CNE that ended disquelifying Julio Castillo from the race. So they found another candidate to run, but wasn’t as popular.
        Such a low blow, drove ProVe to refuse to support Cocciola, and I (along with many other Valencians agreed, MAS, COPEI, etc), You can’t just throw zancadillas and expect to get away with it.
        This was but a sample of the unconstructive stance Cuantas Claras and allies have taken against ProVe in Carabobo, it’s as if their priority was getting rid of ProVe first and then PSUV.
        Thankfully Cocciola and ProVe have come to terms and are working more closely now. The same cannot be said of Scarano.
        Valencia was lost due to a lack of ethics from the Cocciola campaing

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  2. Apart from the illegality and immorality of spending public money in a party rally. Chavismo again fails to understand Opportunity cost. How many thousands camisas rojas can you bring to Caracas by bus, compared to flying 250 by fleeting two planes? Illegal, immoral and stupid!

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