14ymedio, Havana, 7 December 2015 – Satisfaction in the triumph of the opposition, words of encouragement to the great loser of the contest, Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro: these, respectively, were the reactions in Cuba among democracy activists and the ruling party. While Cuban activists celebrated the absolute majority of the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD), Raul Castro took note of the results and limited himself to predicting “new victories of the Bolivarian and Chavista Revolution.”
Cubans were able to listen live to the reading of the first election returns on the Telesur channel, after midnight, in the voice of the president of Venezuela’s National Electoral Council (CNE), Tibisay Lucena.
Cuban Catholic activist Dagoberto Valdes believes that these results are “a great triumph of democracy, a sign of the political maturity of the Venezuelan people.” The director of the magazine Convivencia believes “it is clearly the beginning of a new stage in the life of these people and I wish them progress, freedom and democracy.”
Manuel Cuesta Morua, leader of the Progressive Arc, also refers to the vote on Sunday as a “magnificent exercise in democracy… I think it is important for all regional movements, especially Cuban, that there has been a change in the balance power in Venezuela, which has recovered the sense of plural participation, and that the hegemony of a political group has ended,” said the opponent. “It only remains to congratulate the members of the Democratic Unity Roundtable, with whom we have a good relationship. This means the end of a cycle of populism in Latin America, beginning in Argentina, continuing in Venezuela and also reflected in the end of the hegemony in Ecuador, and it will have an impact on the process that we are engaged in in Cuba to bring democracy,” he added.
“The Patriotic Union of Cuba feels the celebration like we were Venezuelans, because we believe that this has been the triumph of the forces that are in favor of democracy, freedom and respect for human rights over a party that has infringed on freedoms and rights for over 15 years,” said the executive secretary of that organization, José Daniel Ferrer. After congratulating the Venezuelan people “for the extremely important electoral democratic fiesta that it has had,” and the Democratic Unity Roundtable for the triumph, he added, “We were happy for Macri’s win in Argentina and we are glad that Venezuelans democrats have triumphed peacefully. This encourages us to continue fighting for the triumph of the democrats on the Island, because someday we will have in Cuba a system that allows the people to freely elect their leaders and their legislators.”
For the economist Martha Beatriz Roque, “There is a reaction in Latin America about what was happening in their towns,” and she emphasizes that “the Venezuelan people were as tired as the Cuban people.” The opposition leader looks to the new year and expects 2016 “to bring new and good things for all of Latin America, especially for Cuba, which right now is suffering another migration crisis that is ruining a ton of homes and undoing the lives of many people.”
The opponent Guillermo Fariñas believes that what happened Sunday in Venezuela is “proof that totalitarian regimes can fool people for some years but not for all the years. The lack of goods, the underdevelopment of the economy, is a sign that characterizes the construction of socialism anywhere in the world.”
The leader of the Ladies in White, Berta Soler, expected the victory of the opposition. However, she believes that “the whole truth is not reflected… God knows how many more votes there were in favor of the Democratic Unity Roundtable and they managed to hide the real number,” argues the activist, who was arrested on Sunday and released around 11 pm. “The truth is that the democrats have won and will keep winning. Maduro’s government has reached a time when it must let go of power. It is the time when the opposition in Venezuela has triumphed and when the Cuban opposition must also triumph.”