Since the 14 April election the opposition in Venezuela have continued to contest the election results, first demanding a full 100% audit of the results, then when this was agreed to, demanding a full recount and boycotting the audit process. The defeated Presidential candidate, Henrique Capriles, has since called a counter demonstration on 1 May to clash with the traditional half a million strong international workers' day march and a US national has been arrested on suspicion of a plot to destabilise the country
'The next step will be to contest the election [outcome]... in the next few days. With all the proof... we now have, we are going to challenge the election,' As reported by Venezuela analysis, Capriles has indicated that he does not expect 'the Supreme Court to give us a favourable reply' and then called for opposition supporters to protest on International workers day 1 May, when over half a million Chavistas are expected to march. This points again to attempts by Capriles and the Venezuelan opposition to orchestrate violent clashes.
International support for the Venezuelan opposition has again come to light in the arrest of a US national in connection with a plot to destablise the country.
Timothy Hallet Tracy, a 35-year old male from Michigan, is suspected by the authorities of channeling money to right wing opposition youth groups in the country.
Upholding the transparency and accountability of the electoral system, Tibisay Lucena, the president of Venezuela’s National Electoral Council, announced that the additional audit of the remaining 46 percent of ballot boxes will proceed as planned and will begin on May 6th. However the CNE stressed that 'the political parties already audited the electoral process at each stage, certifying the integrity and correct functioning of the system' and 'Representatives from each party signed off on each one, as can be seen in the documents on the CNE website…there were a total of 18 auditing processes, but now they are being silenced and ignored in an attempt to discredit the electoral process,'
As reported by Venezuela analysis
Venezuela’s electoral process includes extensive auditing throughout the entire process, including audits of the computer software, electoral rolls, machine functioning, finger ink, data transmission and vote tallying, with the presence of representatives from all political parties.
Venezuelan Ambassador to the United Kingdom Samuel Moncada said that this stance by the opposition is very similar to the situation before the 2002 coup attempt in Venezuela.
'They are going to say that the CNE and the Supreme Court ignored them, and they are going to take it to the Organization of American States (OAS), but after all the legal mechanisms are exhausted they will try the illegal ones, like calling for a general strike.'
'They will take all legal forms to the limit, like they did in 2002, and try to take the movement to its limit so that the Armed Forces will intervene'
Whilst the opposition's initial plans to destabilise the country largely failed, they are clearly intent on continuing to orchestrate violence, using their international media connections and international funding to undermine the Presidency of Maduro and the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela.