Maduro Plans to Ration Electricity While Blaming U.S. and Opposition for Blackouts

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Posted: Apr 01, 2019 11:15 AM
Maduro Plans to Ration Electricity While Blaming U.S. and Opposition for Blackouts

Source: AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced Sunday that he will ration electricity amid massive power outages in the country.

"I have approved a 30-day plan to regulate the [electricity] output," Maduro said on national television. He mentioned that the rations will help fix outages that affected water supply and communications for several days. The president blamed the outages on a terrorist attack by the U.S. and Venezuela’s opposition party but didn’t provide evidence.

"There is no sabotage," Juan Guaido, self-declared interim president and leader of the National Assembly, posted on Twitter. "They brought the electrical system to a collapse because they are corrupt and now they can't resolve it because they are incapable."

The opposition party claimed that the government put little investment into Venezuela’s national grid and continuously failed to repair it. Communication Minister Jorge Rodriguez said that while the network is being repaired, employees in the private and public sectors would end work at 2 p.m. EST Monday and students would get another day off from school.

Venezuela’s blackouts affected 24 states in their country, taking power away from hospitals, stores, and hotels. It also stopped work at Venezuela’s main oil export terminal of Jose for a period of time, but the terminal restarted their operations March 30th.

Maduro warned Venezuelans on television against any disruption in response to the outages, but Guaido called for people to protest the government’s inability to provide basic necessities beforehand. Some protestors went near the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas tp provoke Maduro directly.

“Many took to balconies and building windows to bang pots in protest and shout curses at Maduro,” Al Jazeera reported. “They also burned rubbish and blocked roads.”