International committee has agreed the following statement and I am going to tonight’s candle light vigil, as well as signing the book of condolences in Bolivar Hall.
As International Co-ordinator of the Green Party of England and Wales I would like to offer condolences to the Venezuelan people for the loss of President Hugo Chavez. Along with Jean Lambert MEP, Richard Mallander then chair of the Green Party Executive and other members of the Green Party, I had the pleasure of meeting Hugo Chavez when he spoke in London in 2006.
Venezuela is one of the few countries in the world that has become more equal in the last decade. Hugo Chavez did so much to create community development and social inclusion boosting health care, housing and education. He was a friend to those in the barrios and indigenous people. While Venezuela, like Britain in the 1980s, has an economy highly dependent on oil, their government has been an advocate at climate negotiations of strong cuts in CO2 emissions. While cancer has taken Hugo Chavez, his legacy, like that of Simon Boliver, will live on.