Juan Pablo Guanipa, the legitimate governor of the state of Zulia, arrived at the protest called by President Juan Guaidó for November 16th in Caracas. Since last October 24th, when he led the demonstration in the capital by the state of Zulia, he had remained in hiding, after Nicolás Maduro’s regime illegitimately revoked his parliamentary immunity and tried to charge him with eight crimes without any basis.
“The struggle is in the streets. We have a responsibility to Venezuela. The street is the stage to exert the necessary pressure against the crisis that this dictatorship has generated. The whole country has to fight, we can’t split, we can’t separate,” said Guanipa, who was received by a large group of demonstrators who called him “brave”.
“We’re here for Zulia and Venezuela. We said that we are willing to offer any sacrifice, to give the testimonies of struggle that correspond to us, to offer ourselves body and soul, because the freedom of this country summons us all. I do it for my children, I do it for my family, I do it for every Zulian family that suffers today. They will never get us on our knees, only before God, the people and the Constitution. May our country live.”
He invited the Armed Forces, specifically the military officials who claim are being subjected to strong pressure, to ‘overcome fear,’ because everything they believe is needed to “overcome the dictatorship” involves risks, such as those he is personally willing to assume, when he shows up in the demonstration”, he added.
“You cannot continue to be used by a dictator who only wants to remain in power. Look at the people of Venezuela, accompany a country that is determined to fight. We have to assume that we can all contribute something to achieve freedom for our country.”
Even his own life
Although he assures that the regime of Nicolas Maduro decided to revoke his parliamentary immunity and prosecute him, he also made a decision. “I decided to take the necessary risks but have a clear conscience. We are going to be here marching with the people. I ask the whole country: let’s maintain a strong stance. If it is marching today it is marching today, if it is tomorrow it will be tomorrow and if necessary to continue until it is necessary, let us do it. And since Monday is Chinita’s day, may Chinita accompany us to continue fighting. It is freedom that is waiting for us.”
“We are fighting in a historical moment and in historical moments, men take the necessary risks. If the liberation of Venezuela costs my life, in my case, I am willing to take the risk. Because for our country we have to rise up, we have to rise up.”
He described freedom as the most precious gift and therefore, “we have to look for what unites us and is the struggle for its (Venezuela’s) rescue. We are going to exert the necessary pressure mechanisms to achieve a resolution to this crisis in Venezuela.