VenezuelaMay 2012 | Risk Summary
In early May Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez named the five members of the inaugural council, whose official function is to advise the executive on issues of 'national interest'. The timing of the announcement has led to speculation that Chávez is preparing the ground for a successor to take over in the event he is not able to run in the October presidential election. However, in our view the council simply represents another sign of the government's lack of trust in Venezuela's democratic institutions, with the candidates directly responsible to the president himself, and no clear powers to act as check on the executive.
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