By Sam Browse, Student Friends of Venezuela
Perhaps the only more overused and inaccurate phrase used by this Tory led government after “there is no alternative” is the lie that “we are all in this together.” It’s totally clear that we have a government that puts the interests of the rich and powerful over the interest of the population.
Hugo Chávez’s government in Venezuela is showing that there are real alternatives which put people first. In just over a decade it has introduced free healthcare for all, giving people access to a doctor for the first time in their lives. Free education, guaranteed in the new constitution, has seen millions of adults learn to read and write. The number of university students has trebled! Poverty has been halved – and it continued to fall during the recession as government ensured that living standards were protected despite economic slowdown!
No wonder Chávez and his coalition of supporters have won 14 elections in the past 12 years.
His United Socialist Party is now the biggest in the country and involves especially large numbers of women and young people.
Chávez calls the policies underway in Venezuela ‘socialism of the 21st century’. Solidarity with this progressive government is vital, especially as US-backed allies have sought to overthrow it in a military coup and through economic sabotage. This threat is ongoing.
Come along to the Venezuela Solidarity Campaign Conference
on 16 April to find out more. A student leader from Chávez’s party will be speaking on the transformation in education taking place in the country.