Venezuela’s Chief Prosecutor Tarek Saab has requested an investigation against the country’s interim president for allegedly sabotaging the electrical system. The South American nation has been without power since Thursday.
A high percentage of the country remains without power and it is unknown when it will come back. Cities such as Maracaibo and Caracas saw power return yesterday but there were reports of it leaving again just minutes later.
Former president Nicolas Maduro has said that it was a sabotage against the country’s electrical system. He recently explained that it was a cyber attack that had left most of the country without power.
Mr. Guaido and the opposition accuse Maduro and his party of failing to invest on maintenance. Problems with the electricity began on Thursday and they continued to get worse, with most of the country left in the dark by Friday.
During the weekend, videos showed electrical plants catching on fire and exploding. In Maracaibo, electricity returned yesterday but videos taken minutes later showed power lines and plants exploding. Several areas of the city were without power less than 30 minutes later.
The announcement by the chief prosecutor comes just hours after Maduro claimed that it was a sabotage and that the justice system would go after those responsible. It is not the first time that the former government accuses the opposition of sabotaging the electrical system.
In recent years, Maduro and supporters have accused the opposition of going after the electrical system. The opposition blames the electrical problems on mismanagement by Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro.
The electrical problems come at a time in which there are high tensions in the country. Maduro and officials have threatened to arrest Mr. Guaido over the recent incidents at the border and in the country.
Mr. Guaido made a brief appearance in Colombia and later visited other South American nations to meet with their presidents. The Supreme Court had previously frozen his assets and placed a travel ban on him.
Mr. Guaido returned to the country and was not arrested, despite the many threats by Maduro and members of the PSUV party. The interim president has urged security forces to step away from Maduro and stop going against the population.
Several areas of the country remain without power, causing chaos among the population. On Sunday, several people were arrested after they began looting supermarkets and other businesses. In Maracaibo, the situation was out of control on Sunday and Monday as groups of people looted shopping malls, bakeries and anything they could get access to.
The opposition says 24 people have lost their lives over the power cuts. Many hospitals were left without power and most of them did not have electrical plants that could keep the buildings and equipment operating.
The US Department recently announced that it will withdraw all its diplomatic staff from the country this week over the deteriorating situation. Jorge Arreaza, the minister of foreign affairs, said a few hours ago that the diplomatic personnel had been given 72 hours to leave. The announcement came after the US had already announced that it would withdraw the personnel over the situation in the country.