In a heated debate, opposition deputies suggested to grant special ruling powers to President Hugo Chávez only until January 5, 2011, when the new National Assembly takes office. This motion was rejected by pro-government lawmakers
Venezuela's National Assembly passed on Friday the draft enabling law that allows President Hugo Chávez to issue decree-laws for the next 18 months.
At the request of National Assembly Chair Cilia Flores, the Parliament amended Article 3 of the enabling law to extend to 18 months the term during which Chávez's special ruling powers will be in force.
Flores said the bill was drafted having in mind thousands of Venezuelan who were made homeless by heavy rains nationwide. Dissenting parties Podemos, Patria para Todos, and Frente Humanista Ecológico voted against the bill. "We have collected signatures from people supporting the proposal" of extending the special ruling powers for 18 months, added Flores.
Flores announced that on Friday the law will be delivered to President Hugo Chávez. "I am taking it with me to deliver it to the president," Flores said after signing the law.
In a heated debate, opposition deputies suggested to grant special ruling powers to President Hugo Chávez only until January 5, 2011, when the new National Assembly takes office. This motion was rejected by pro-government lawmakers.
José Vicente Rangel clearly said: "We are not conducting negotiations threatened with a gun in the head." He warned behind closed doors in the midst of the social upheaval occurred during the oil strike in 2002 and 2003. Dissenting Timoteo Zambrano answered back that no other option was available: "The thing is that otherwise, you do not negotiate."