KINGSTON, Jamaica, Nov. 19, 2020 /PRNewsCentre/ — Look at Venezuela through the eyes of the people who live there and have endured years of corruption and economic hardship. The Caribbean Investigative Journalism Network (CIJN) launched a series on Venezuela that seeks to unravel the chaos and humanitarian crisis against the backdrop of a politically charged environment.
Though conservative estimates say a family of five needs USD $225 a month for food, salaries regulated by the State only provide anywhere from USD $3 to USD $10 a month. Food packages and allowances do not begin to cover even a fraction of that. Doctors are selling Amway products. Students are shunning University degrees that will only earn a graduate USD $3 a month. How do people survive?
The government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro remains entrenched in Caracas despite more than six years of U.S. sanctions. Mr. Maduro sells off the nation’s vast oil and gold resources to reward loyalists, exploits the splintered opposition, and benefits from economic and diplomatic support from Russia, China, Iran, and other countries. Meantime, Venezuela’s 30 million people are suffering through the worst economic crisis in a century. An estimated five million have fled the country. Those who remain face shortages of food, fuel, clean water, and a viable healthcare system in the era of coronavirus. Incomes have been obliterated by mismanagement, corruption, and hyperinflation.
The perspectives included are from journalists who are Venezuelans caught in the middle and according to veteran journalist, Ana Matute, who see journalism as an escape. The interviews with Venezuelan nationals from various walks of life illustrates the turmoil in a country with no clear future. A highlight of the series is the photo essay by photojournalist, Gabriela Oraa, which depicts Venezuela as it is today and captures the emotion and lifestyle of a country in turmoil.
SOURCE: Caribbean Investigative Journalism Network (CIJN)