On March 8, 2013, Nicolás Maduro assumed the Presidency of Venezuela, days after the death of Hugo Chávez, who had led the RBolivarian evolution and given a complete tour of one of the countries with the most oil reserves in the world.
The first eight years of Hugo Chávez’s successor (1999-2013) were stormy, but the last two have been characterized by relative calm. There have been many political and social events that have occurred in Maduro’s Venezuela, many of them not without controversy. In these years, due to the crisis, political and economic instability, millions of Venezuelans have left the country, while the opposition has failed to organize itself and has taken false steps, such as appointing a president in charge who tried to create a parallel government. , without achieving it. In addition, there have been protests led by the hard wing of the opposition, which were repressed, and a pandemic that left the country touched. Below is a summary of Maduro’s 10 years in power:
In his debut year, Maduro acted as an imitator of Chávez, whom he said he came to “hear” after his death, wanted to continue the Bolivarian revolution and promised a five-year period of prosperity. He won at the polls, but the opposition never considered him a legitimate president.
2014: protests and repression
The most radical wing of the opposition defied the government and took the streets for weeks with protests calling for the resignation of the president. The police and military response to the demonstrations ended with 43 deaths and dozens of injuries and arrests. Maduro accused the opposition of provoking the massacre and the opposition denounced the events before the international community.
2015: shortages and legislative defeat
The economic crisis breaks out, product shortages worsen and popular discontent increases, a scenario capitalized on by the opposition that achieves a resounding victory in the legislative elections and wins two thirds of Parliament. For the first time there is an official minority.
2016: the threat of recall
The opposition, with a majority in Parliament, advances in the idea of revoking Maduro’s mandate and the protesters return to the streets. Justice and the electoral body come out in defense of the president and stop the recall, considering that the process lacked legitimacy amid allegations of fraud by Chavismo. Discontent grows.
2017: a parliament without powers
The Supreme Court withdraws powers from Parliament and a wave of anti-government demonstrations takes place, which end with another 127 deaths and the unilateral establishment of a plenipotentiary Constituent Assembly made up only of pro-government supporters. The Government of Maduro is met with great condemnation from the international community, while the Prosecutor’s Office accuses the Government of breaking the constitutional thread.
2018: crisis, elections and assassination
The sanctions against Venezuela increase the scarcity and this affects all spheres of life in Venezuela, while the exodus of citizens to neighboring countries and even Spain spills over.
Maduro is re-elected in the presidential elections with the lowest turnout since Chávez took power, practically without opposition and in the midst of widespread international questioning. Months later, Maduro is the victim of an assassination attempt during a public act.
2019: Guaidó and the sanctions
The head of Parliament, Juan Guaidó, proclaims himself “interim president” of Venezuela and some 50 countries recognize him. His intention is to create a kind of ‘parallel state’, while international sanctions are intensified that leave Venezuela unable to market its oil. Maduro calls for calm and remains in power. Despite the rise of Guaidó, the opposition remains disorganized.
2020: the pandemic
The global chaos caused by the covid pandemic was accompanied by political stability. With the country in quarantine, the protests were silenced, the Constituent Assembly was dissolved and a new Parliament was elected.
2021: Chavismo becomes strong
Chavismo obtains an overwhelming majority in the legislatures and the rejection of Guaidó’s ‘interim government’ is broadened, which helped legitimize Maduro before the international community. In addition, the economy recovers and begins to grow in the second half of the year.
2022: economic recovery
Venezuela obtains in 2022 one of the highest economic growth in the world, the productive apparatus is revived and expectations increase. The opposition, badly damaged by Guaidó’s questioned self-proclamation as ‘interim president’, continues without alternatives. With the ongoing war in Ukraine and the new Biden administration, the international community is once again coming closer to Maduro’s Venezuela.
2023: towards the presidential elections
The Venezuelan opposition calls primaries on October 22 to choose the candidate who will face Maduro in the 2024 presidential elections. The diaspora will be able to participate in the consultation. Guaidó will be one of the candidates, but under the discredit caused by the years in which he tried to dispute Maduro’s leadership from an illegal space.
* This information has been edited and revised after its publication, with the aim of including relevant information that was absent in the first version.