The following two resolutions were passed yesterday at the Amicus national conference with only two votes against. A full report will appear tomorrow. We also reproduce the HoV leaflet that was distributed amongst the delegates.
This Conference notes that the government of Hugo Chavez since its was first elected in 1998 has brought health care to the sick, education to the illiterate, housed the homeless and redistributed millions of acres of land. The constitution guarantees the public ownership of the oil industry and the distribution of wealth to all citizens.
This conference congratulates the Hands off Venezuela Campaign for its role in drawing to the attention of the British Labour movement the continuing revolution being carried out by the Venezuelan people.
The Venezuelan government's popularity has been proven time and time again culminating in the ringing endorsement of the referendum of 2004 in which the Chavez government gained 60% of the popular vote.
The Venezuelan revolution is in danger and has been threatened on more than one occasion. A far right coup was attempted in 2002 only to be defeated by the people. This was followed by a bosses lockout. Again the workers came to the rescue and ran the factories without the bosses, ensuring the economy did not collapse.
Shamefully the United States has opposed the Chavez government since its election and has supported every undemocratic attempt to overthrow it. The real motives of the Bush regime are exposed by the call from Pat Robertson to assassinate Chavez.
International solidarity with the people of Venezuela is vital if the revolution is to survive. Amicus pledges,
174. SUPPORT VENEZUELA'S BOLIVARIAN REVOLUTION
This Conference congratulates and supports the colossal advances being made by the Venezuelan Revolution under President Hugo Chavez in carrying out policies, which benefit working people, the poor and the landless.
Conference recognises that the nine electoral victories won by Hugo Chavez since 1998, provide the Revolution with an overwhelming popular mandate. This reflects the overwhelming support for the social programmes carried out by the government in relation to education, literacy, healthcare, land reform and subsidised food.
Conference views with alarm the bellicose threats from the US Administration and its imperialist puppets, including the Venezuelan oligarchy and the Colombian Government, which pose a real threat to the life of Chavez as well as the Revolution itself. Conference therefore opposes all outside interference in the affairs of Venezuela.
Conference expresses its support for the National Union of Workers (UNT) as the legitimate voice of the organised working class and calls upon our union to build links with its Venezuelan counterpart. Furthermore, Conference calls upon the NEC to support a delegation to Venezuela in order to establish bonds of brotherhood between workers in Britain and Venezuela, as well as inviting trade unionists from Venezuela to Britain.
Furthermore, Conference pledges its support for the initiatives of labour movement backed campaigns that further the above aims.
Affiliate to the Hands Off Venezuela Campaign!
WHY SHOULD AMICUS AFFILIATE TO HOV?
The Hands Off Venezuela Campaign is a broad-based solidarity campaign, set up to support the Venezuelan Revolution following the failed coup in April 2002. It is now active in 40 countries, including Venezuela. Since then, it has spread the message of the achievements taking place in Venezuela, especially in the British trade union field. As a result, Hugo Chavez has publicly praised the solidarity work of HOV on a number of occasions, including on his visit to London last year. As a result of our work, many trade unions voted to affiliate or support to HOV, such as the shop workers union USDAW, the Communication Workers' Union , Public and Commerical Services Union , the GMB, Fire Brigades Union , the train drivers union ASLEF, National Union of Journalists , college lecturers union , public sector workers union UNISON, BECTU, Community, TGWU and AMICUS.
Surely it is better to be involved with both solidarity organizations, than to exclude one over the other? This will prevent duplication and assist the co-ordination of the solidarity work for Venezuela. It makes perfect sense. The work of our supporters in AMICUS has resulted in TWO resolutions supporting Venezuela at this conference. Together, HOV, AMICUS and VIC, can jointly promote the Venezuelan Revolution. Rodrigo Chaves, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Venezuela, who will be present at AMICUS conference, has also urged all the solidarity organizations to work together when he met with us last September in London. Again, passing resolution 173 will facilitate this cooperation. If Hands Off Venezuela is good enough for Hugo Chavez, then surely it is good enough for AMICUS! WE URGE AMICUS DELEGATES TO AFFILIATE TO BOTH CAMPAIGNS. PLEASE SUPPORT RESOLUTION No. 173!
Join Hands Off Venezuela today!