A top official in Nicolás Maduro’s regime has said all public employees are obliged to support the Venezuelan government.
During his television program, Diosdado Cabello — who now serves on Maduro’s unconstitutional National Constituent Assembly — said everyone who works for the government must openly support the regime with regional elections coming up on October 15.
“If you work for a government entity, be it as mayor or minister, you have to support the revolution,” he said. Cabello also instructed all employees in a supervisor position to instruct their staff to go vote, and to accompany them to voting booths with voter IDs in-hand. “That is how things should be,” he said.
This isn’t the first time that Maduro’s regime has threatened public workers into showing their support, especially during an election. Last July, Maduro ordered public employees to vote for the illegitimate Constituent Assembly that has since usurped the role of the National Assembly.
“If we have 15,000 workers,” Maduro said at the time, “15,000 workers must vote, without any excuse.”
“Take the payroll of all institutions, companies and do the math,” he said. “We have to set up the Constituent Assembly by company, suspend their payroll, call all of the workers and organize a plan to have them all vote on July 30.”
The regime used a similar strategy this April when a wave of intense opposition protests were just flaring up. Officials threatened public employees about losing their jobs if they were discovered to be protesting. Many were accused of committing treason against the “fatherland” for attending any opposition demonstrations.
Pressure on public employees demonstrates the terrible approval Maduro has with the Venezuelan people. With no one else to vote in his favor, he has resorted to bullying public workers. On numerous occasions, he also threatened to revoke their CLAP benefits — the food program that provides basic resources to the Venezuelan people amid a shortage, which is one reason for his low popularity in the first place.