Arab Today, arab today tgif fridays off but venezuelans not exactly happy
Last Updated : GMT 20:18:31
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

TGIF Fridays off, but Venezuelans not exactly happy

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today TGIF Fridays off, but Venezuelans not exactly happy

People queue outside a supermarket in Caracas where shelves are often bare in the recession-racked country
Caracas - AFP

A long weekend could mean three precious days to catch up on sleep, spend time with family, enjoy a getaway... or, in Venezuela, standing in snaking lines at supermarkets whose shelves are bare and whose lights could go out at any minute.

That was how Isleida, a government employee at the Venezuelan transport ministry, planned to spend the first of two months of mandatory Fridays off.

The measure, which applies across the public sector, was decreed this week by President Nicolas Maduro as part of an emergency plan to save electricity while Venezuela struggles through an economic crisis and a severe power shortage.

Isleida spent the morning doing housework, then planned to go shop for food -- a scarce commodity in the recession-racked country.

"It shouldn't be like this. We're paralyzing the country. Lots of things aren't getting done," said Isleida, a 50-something woman whose name has been changed to protect her from scrutiny -- or worse -- by government officials.

The socialist government blames the electricity shortage on three years of drought, which have choked off the 18 hydroelectric dams the country relies on for power.
But some economists warned that shutting down the public sector once a week would only make the recession worse.

"The impact of the electricity crisis will be devastating for the country's productivity, which was already clearly depressed. It's horrifying to see the condition of our economy and infrastructure," said economist Luis Vicente Leon.

"It's even more horrifying that the only official response to the fact that there's no light is to turn out the lights."

Blackouts have swept the country because of the crisis.

The drought has caused officials to implement water rationing, too, adding to the headaches of a nation already suffering shortages of food, basic goods like deodorant and toilet paper, and soaring inflation, which came in at 180 percent last year.

- 'Backwards like a crab' -
"Everything's running behind. This is a step backwards for the country. We're moving backwards like a crab. We're in bad shape," said Carmen Avendanos, a 62-year-old retiree who went to her state-run bank Friday -- only to find it closed.

The shutdown does not apply to schools, hospitals or other essential services.

Maduro, who had already cut the workday to six hours for ministries and state companies, has also ordered them to cut their electricity consumption by 20 percent.

The president has dispatched the army to monitor compliance.

Major electricity consumers such as hotels face nine hours of rationing a day, during which they must generate their own power.

Shopping centers have cut back their hours since that plan was introduced.

Adalberto, who has a small candy shop near the transport ministry, was waiting for customers to appear on Friday morning.

"Twenty percent of my customers work at the ministries. But the (hydroelectric) dams are in critical condition. We have to do our part," he said.

- Turning off the lights -
Anticipating a backlash from the opposition -- which capitalized on voter frustration to win a landslide in legislative elections last year, and is now trying to force Maduro from power -- the president called on the nation to avoid "hate, revenge and little diatribes."

That didn't stop the speaker of the National Assembly, Henry Ramos Allup.

"To solve the chaotic electricity problem, the genius of Miraflores (the presidential palace) has rolled out this rubbish of Fridays off. To fully solve it, he should just extend it to 365 days a year," he wrote ironically on Twitter.

Experts questioned whether the plan would even affect electricity consumption.

"There will be no major impact from this measure," said Joel Carrillo of the Venezuelan College of Engineers' Electricity Commission.

His organization has called on the government to revive old thermoelectric power plants in the face of what they warn is the imminent collapse of output from the Guri hydroelectric dam, which supplies 70 percent of Venezuela's electricity.

The dam currently has a water level just three centimeters (about one inch) above the critical limit.

Venezuela has the world's largest oil reserves, but the government has resisted using crude to generate electricity, calling it inefficient.

Maduro has urged Venezuelans to be "conscientious" by turning out lights, watching less TV and limiting use of their hair dryers in order to avoid even more drastic measures.

 

arabstoday
arabstoday

GMT 19:23 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Japan trade surplus expands strongly in September

GMT 14:52 2017 Thursday ,19 October

South Korea raises growth outlook

GMT 14:43 2017 Thursday ,19 October

China's economic growth slows in Q3

GMT 13:30 2017 Thursday ,19 October

NAFTA talks deadlock: the main sticking points

GMT 13:24 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Cognac craze in US, China prompts Hennessy expansion

GMT 12:30 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Swiss 'tax spy' ready to confess in German trial

GMT 12:24 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Juice bottler Refresco in talks with French investor

GMT 22:28 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Bahrain signs $3.8bn deal for F-16 jets
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today tgif fridays off but venezuelans not exactly happy Arab Today, arab today tgif fridays off but venezuelans not exactly happy

 



Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today tgif fridays off but venezuelans not exactly happy Arab Today, arab today tgif fridays off but venezuelans not exactly happy

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Arab tradition glitters in Colombia

GMT 12:59 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Arab tradition glitters in Colombia
Arab Today, arab today Second US judge orders freeze

GMT 08:04 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Second US judge orders freeze
Arab Today, arab today Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts

GMT 17:52 2017 Sunday ,03 September

Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts
Arab Today, arab today Silent Republicans have their reasons

GMT 16:55 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Silent Republicans have their reasons
Arab Today, arab today Hiring not part of Alibaba pledge

GMT 11:26 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Hiring not part of Alibaba pledge
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Sidem reveals plan to improve education

GMT 15:52 2017 Friday ,06 October

Sidem reveals plan to improve education
Arab Today, arab today Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action

GMT 10:54 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action
Arab Today, arab today Massacre fears spark race

GMT 19:09 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Massacre fears spark race
Arab Today, arab today The history of solar eclipses

GMT 05:16 2017 Sunday ,20 August

The history of solar eclipses
Arab Today, arab today Mercedes says recalls 400,000 UK cars

GMT 06:56 2017 Tuesday ,17 October

Mercedes says recalls 400,000 UK cars
Arab Today, arab today Britain's Vauxhall to cut 400 jobs

GMT 10:53 2017 Sunday ,15 October

Britain's Vauxhall to cut 400 jobs
Arab Today, arab today Hussein Fahmy happy for honoring in festival

GMT 07:47 2017 Tuesday ,17 October

Hussein Fahmy happy for honoring in festival
Arab Today, arab today Climate-disrupting volcanoes helped topple

GMT 16:00 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Climate-disrupting volcanoes helped topple

GMT 09:31 2017 Monday ,16 October

Dalal Abdel Aziz happy for “Seventh Neighbor”

GMT 18:15 2017 Monday ,16 October

British actress becomes fifth woman

GMT 18:29 2017 Sunday ,03 September

Designer produced new set of ornaments

GMT 05:11 2017 Tuesday ,17 October

Three killed, 360,000 without power

GMT 10:46 2017 Saturday ,05 August

Nanis reveals simple ideas for home renovation

GMT 23:42 2017 Monday ,16 October

Better Marriages Make

GMT 06:52 2017 Monday ,16 October

Airbus CEO says won't cling to job

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 03:59 2017 Sunday ,15 October

US mobile carriers Sprint, T-Mobile to merge

GMT 19:29 2017 Tuesday ,29 August

Yomna: decoration leaved positive effects
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday