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Venezuela: Diosdado Cabello says that El Nacional still owes him and threatened to seize his website

The number two of the Chavista regime led by Nicolás Maduro, God given hairaffirmed this Wednesday that El Nacional still owes him the compensation for “moral damage” ordered by the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) of Venezuela, after a lawsuit by the politician, despite the delivery of the media’s headquarters as part of the compensation.

“I am not asking for property. The Court sentenced an amount, what do they do?: auction off the property. The property is awarded at the price they say, Bottom line is you still owe me (Miguel Henrique Otero, director of El Nacional)”, expressed the leader in his television program “Con el Mazo Dando”, broadcast by the state channel Venezolana de Televisión (VTV).

He also said that now “it causes him to go” through the media’s website. “Because you owe me, with the value of (the headquarters) El Nacional you did not pay me, I think now I’m going to go down the page“, he threatened.

Cabello denounced El Nacional for replicating information from the Spanish newspaper ABC, which indicated that the Chavista leader was being investigated by the United States for alleged links to drug trafficking.

The El Nacional building that Diosdado Cabello appropriated thanks to an irregular court ruling. Photo Rayner Peña R./EFE

Story of a disguised expropriation

The TSJ sentenced the Venezuelan newspaper to pay Cabello 237,000 petros (cryptocurrency promoted by the Venezuelan government) at the exchange rate of the day, which meant $13,369,170.

The Supreme notified of the seizure of the newspaper’s headquarters last May as part of the compensation.

The politician added that now in the building, located in Caracas, a university of communications will be opened.

On Monday, the Venezuelan Justice handed over the headquarters to Cabello, which the media described as a “irregular and clandestine judicial auction”.

Diosdado Cabello now threatened to take over the website of El Nacional.  Photo Leonardo Fernandez Viloria/Reuters

Diosdado Cabello now threatened to take over the website of El Nacional. Photo Leonardo Fernandez Viloria/Reuters

“In an irregular and clandestine judicial auction, carried out in contravention of all the procedural rules that Venezuelan law requires to be complied with to carry out this type of act (…), he was directly awarded the property of the headquarters of El Nacional and the plots of land on which it is built to Diosdado Cabello,” published El Nacional.

The general manager of El Nacional, Jorge Makrionitis, explained to the EFE news agency that it was an irregular procedure that violates freedom of expression and that implies the total “loss” of the property.

“In the auction of the building there was never a public tender, which is what is normally done, and here what was done was an award. That is another irregularity in the case, but already, for this moment, in concrete terms, the property was completely lost and is delivered to the plaintiff,” he said.

Makrionitis explained at that time that they did not know “exactly” if the delivery included “cash as a form of payment” or the official delivery of the property to the plaintiff, but that it is a fact “that it was executed and adjudicated.”

Likewise, the Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) condemned the act and described it as “consummation of the robbery” of the newspaper El Nacional.

This measure, the hemispheric organization said in a statement, “was executed irregularly, by not publicly informing the day, time and minimum amount for the interested parties to make their offers, in violation of the procedural rules required by law.”

It was about “the consummation of the ‘theft of the century’ to independent journalism, something that can only happen in a dictatorship”said Jorge Canahuati, president of the IAPA.

With information from EFE



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