Citizens Mock Venezuela Plan To Extend Weekends To Save Energy

REUTERS/Miraflores (Palace/Handout via Reuters)

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Chris White Tech Reporter
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Venezuelan citizens are mocking President Nicolas Maduro’s announment that all Fridays for the next two months will be holidays in a desperate attempt to save energy.

“We’ll have long weekends,” Maduro said in a television appearance Wednesday night. He added the move is meant to stave off rolling energy blackouts across the country.

Debilitating droughts, tanking oil prices, and an antiquated energy infrastructure have all contributed to the South American country’s downward spiral. The droughts have affected the country’s hydropower electrical grid as well, which accounts for 60 percent of Venezuela’s electricity.

Maduro’s opponents torched the announcement, calling it a reckless ploy as the country battles food shortages, triple-digit inflation rates and a skidding economy.

“For Maduro the best way to resolve this crisis is to reduce the country’s productivity,” Caracas city councillor Jesus Armas told Reuters. “Fridays are free bread and circus.”

Citizens reacted with mockery. “You must be kidding???” one person wrote on Twitter. Still, others are worried the extended holiday will affect schools and the market place.

“The Venezuelan people are hardworking, we will not move forward with the laziness of @NicolasMaduro and #ViernesNoLaborables need a change,” another person tweeted.

The details of the 60-day plan will be revealed Thursday, Maduro said during his television appearance, which included spliced images of Maduro’s predecessor, Hugo Chavez, who died of cancer in 2013.

“I think we can overcome this situation without increasing fares or rationing,” Maduro said.

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