Venezuela: Free Working Class Prisoners and Rodney Álvarez

By Marea Socialista

This Thursday, July 22, family members, union leaders, organizations and activists gathered in front of the Palace of Justice to demand the freedom of Rodney Álvarez and other imprisoned workers. This action is part of the campaign that is being carried out to confront in the street the repression of workers in Venezuela in a context of crisis and the severe blow to wages and labor rights. Many are the cases of workers who have been deprived of their liberty for demanding to earn wages that cover the Basic Basket, for defending the labor gains that have suffered serious setbacks in recent years in Venezuela or, simply, for denouncing acts of corruption in state companies, including PDVSA. A separate and sadly emblematic case is that of Rodney Álvarez, who has been denied his freedom for 10 years and has been sentnsed to 15 years in prison without any proof that incriminates him in the crime that is accused of. Rodney Álvarez has been the government´s scapegoat to cover up Héctor Maicán, a PSUV militant and close friend of the former governor of Bolívar state at the time of the events, Rángel Gómez. The fight for justice brings several sectors together that unite to confront this highly repressive policy by the government of Nicolás Maduro against the Venezuelan working class that has imprisoned more than one hundred workers who have raised their voices in the face of the impoverishment to which they have been subjected. Zuleika Matamoros of Marea Socialista makes a call to the workers of the country to organize and take actions that aim to free the workers imprisoned for protesting and for the freedom of Rodney Álvarez. “We already know how the Maduro government and private entrepreneurs act with respect to workers. They have eliminated our salary and all labor rights. That is why the call is to organize ourselves to confront the hunger imposing policy against the working class and the repression with which it is executed by a government that falsely calls itself socialist and working class. Nothing further from reality.”