Dominica to deepen ties with Venezuela – PM

Chavez waves a flag after his extraordinary victory on Sunday

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit says Dominica looks forward to strengthening relationships with Venezuela now that Hugo Chavez has emerged victorious in that country’s election on Sunday.

“First of all I would like to congratulate President Chavez and the Venezuelan people,” Skerrit said, describing Chavez as ‘a very dear friend.’ “Clearly is it a very sound mandate. People have gotten into his policies and his programs. They are satisfied with what he has done for the people of Venezuela.”

The Prime Minister said Dominica is looking towards deepening ties with the South American country. “We celebrate in his victory. We have been excellent partners in advancing the development of the Caribbean and Latin America and we look forward to further deepening and strengthening out bilateral relations with Venezuela,” he noted.

PM Skerrit said this also stands true for Dominica’s multilateral relations with ALBA and Petrocaribe. “We look forward to our continued close collaboration and cooperation,” he reiterated.

Despite predictions that it was going to be a close race Chavez scored a comfortable victory in Sunday’s poll that could extend his rule to 20 years.

“Truthfully, this has been the perfect battle, a democratic battle,” Chavez told tens of thousand of jubilant supporters from the balcony of the presidential palace late on Sunday while holding up a replica of the sword of independence hero Simon Bolivar. ““Venezuela will continue along the path of democratic and Bolivarian socialism of the 21st century.”

It was an extraordinary victory for a leader who just a few months ago feared for his life as he struggled to recover from cancer. He won 54.4 percent of the vote, with 90 percent of the ballots counted, compared with 45 percent for his main rival Henrique Capriles.

More than 80 percent of registered voters cast ballots.

“We celebrate in his victory…he has been a very dear friend of Dominica,” Prime Minister Skerrit said.

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  1. dissident
    October 9, 2012

    Since our economy is the best in de caribbean I imagine that we doing better than Venezuela. Will chavez re-election do anything to help our economy? thanks to PDVSA gas is now past $15 and surcharge on our DOMLEC bill is KILLING US. Is that de blessing we getting from our ‘Socialist Motherland’?

    What a shame.

    We waiting for some free plastic petro casa houses cause jah know loan hard to get when u bringing home $200 a week with a family to feed.

  2. Dominican
    October 9, 2012

    A quote from the blogger – Roseau Valley.
    “Listening to Q95 in the diaspora, one may get the impression that the Skerrit led administration is unpopular in Dominica and Dominicans are ready to take the streets in protest. The reality has been shown over and over that this is not necessarily the case”. It certainly not the case.

    You also get the impression that certain Dominica is the wost country inthe world for visitors.

  3. Ra
    October 9, 2012

    To rival America or Great Britain you would have to enslave foreign nations for 300 and more years.You’d have to be a colonialist,a anti-CHRIST,a babylonian.

  4. Anonymous
    October 8, 2012

    Hugo chavez 55.11% capriles 44.9% where chavez won 22 of the 24 states,Capriles also lost his state,clean an clear sweep.think thats the voice of the poeple,VIVA LA REVOLUTION!!!!!!!

  5. shakespere
    October 8, 2012

    is our connection with chevez or venezuala,, are we in bed with the boss or the company,,,i just want to know who might be the father so i can get my money every month xx

  6. dom
    October 8, 2012

    Venezuela will default on its loans soon enough. Can’t give give give

    October 8, 2012

    I join in expressing congratulations to President Chavez of Venezuela.

    To the extent that the elections were actually free and fair, seen to be free and fair and the voice of the electorate can be said to be heard through the ballot box then the will of the people must be respected. That is the product of true democracy. Government of the people, by the people, for the people.

    To the extent that the elections were free and fair, one cannot be hypocritical in withholding congratulations to the government and people or Venezuela as part of the global support of democracy in action around the world and denouncing the embrace of anti-democratic governance.

    To the extent that the elections were free and fair, and the oppositions felt that they were playing on a level playing field (barring the natural advantage of the incumbent over the opposition) then I express congratulations to Mr. Chavez and the people of Venezuela. In that regard, I could not support the use of the national media in choosing to make an address to the nations within hours of the opening of the polls, when the law states that there should be no campaigning for 24 hours before the elections.

    To the extent that the elections were free and fair, and the opposition had access to the national media and all voters were properly identified as who they claim to be, then the results are to be seen as the democratic expression of the free political will of people of Venezuela through the ballot box. It matters little whether the expression of that free will may not be in the best interest of the United States or those who dislike the socialist ideology of Mr. Chavez.

    I am reminded that apartheid South Africa, Pinochet-Chile and Mubarack Egypt were seen as propped up democracies in favour of the West but we all know of the terrible actions of these administrations. We cannot ignore the expression of the free will of the Palestinians, which resulted in the election of Hamas with a decisive majority in the 2006 parliamentary elections against the PLO-affiliated Fatah party-which the US now supports but of which it was critical when Yasser Arafat was in charge and seen to be a legitimate champion of the Palestinian people.

    The reality of democracy has revealed its face in the recently held Egyptian elections in which the Muslim Brotherhood came out victorious, again this was not the favorite of the West but the free will of the people. If we advocate for democracy and to the extent that elections are held in a free and fear manner, then we must accept what it produces. Hence, to the extent that the elections in Venezuela were free and fear, which includes the cleansing and updating of the voters lists, the elimination of bribery of voters and the buying of foreign votes with airline tickets etc., then I say congratulations to Mr. Chavez.

    There are obvious lessons in this election results for us. Both government and opposition can take a page to the extent that it suits them. All politics is local. And as long as the people on the ground are satisfied with their government, it does not matter what others may say.

    It also advises us that sometimes, it pays not to listen to the loud noises of talk radio or even comments made by people on the internet.

    Listening to Q95 in the diaspora, one may get the impression that the Skerrit led administration is unpopular in Dominica and Dominicans are ready to take the streets in protest. The reality has been shown over and over that this is not necessarily the case.

    Likewise, we must be careful in internalizing what we hear on US corporate media, who have their own agenda and are extremely negative towards any government that does not support the US agenda.

    We must ask ourselves, to what extent what we are repeatedly told about Cuba, Venezuela and Iran by the United States is truth in the same way we found out that all we heard of the mass stock pile of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was false leading up to the Iraqi war.

    Congratulations to Mr. Chavez and the people of Venezuela.

    Roseau Valley.

    • MOI
      October 9, 2012

      where is your “work cited” page, and Table of Contents

  8. Anonymous
    October 8, 2012

    We all know that its the country with most reserve gase,but still so much poverty.Socialismo is a form of governing run or control by govermemt sector an the poeple have understood that,chavez have transform this country after 14 years thats y the people voted him again,this goverment hve made many errors but the masses are saying that life is better now,i say so cause im living here 7 years now.

  9. love
    October 8, 2012

    booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo i fell sorry for the people of the country :!: :!: :!:

    • October 9, 2012


      • Washington
        October 9, 2012

        You will be surprised to learn how happy these people live. All they do is try to spread sorrow among people who are seeking happiness.

  10. Pondera
    October 8, 2012

    Let us ponder and think of what ticks the population. Politics has to be redefined as keeping your people happy by all means possible. Allocating scarce resources to warring tribes. I wish President Chavez well as he keep the Venezuellans happy. CONGRATULATIONS!!

  11. Malgraysa
    October 8, 2012

    Clearly, 46% of the voters in Venezuela are not satisfied with what Chavez has done for the people of Venezuela and this is not a sound mandate.In school it would be barely a pass mark. I smell trouble ahead for a nation that is that divided. As for us,maybe mr. Skerrit now has the confidence to push ahead with an election/poll that will ask for a mandate to change the constitution and install him as executive President of Dominica so he can emulate his dear freind mr. Chavez and occupy his little palace. The biggest price in this would be his immunity from prosecution and any insult to the Presidency would become a treasonable offence. May Godd safe Dominica! I’m out of here.

    • Roof top
      October 8, 2012

      A win is a wina mandate is a mandate so let me say it that way to you when the time come for him to be out he will be but for now we welcome you as the president of Venezuela well dome Chavez.

  12. Referee
    October 8, 2012

    Yes, we expect ties to Venezuela to deepen along the socialist path that Chavez has been on for the past 14 years.
    And yes, we expect Skerrit to imitate Chavez in ways that are not particularly in keeping with the traditions of democracy and free enterprise that are the connerstone of our political system.
    Any wonder why the preoccupation localy to expand the public sector in the local economy? With plans for hotels in the Cabrits and at the site of the old public works, it should be obvious to all that Skerrit intends to expands the public sector, as Chavez did in Venezuela. When these hotels are completed we expect to see signs, both visible and invisible, “only party suporters need apply”. That’s what is happening in PDVSA, the Venezuelan oil company.
    Since Skerrit assumed office there has been no expansion of the private sector, except for a few Chinese business that have raised alarm bells from indegenous local enterprises. And we know why. Private sector people, at least those who are politically independent are seen as a threat to the rule of the emerging dictator. So Chavez style, the pm considers it’s in his political best interest to grow the public sector which will enable him to create and expand his system of patronage and thus consolidate his power.
    THe next stage in the local “revolution” will be extend control over the police and the judiciary which is well under way. More spying on citizens, more selective prosecution, more crime, more drug trafficking, all earmarks of the Venzeuela Bolivian revolution that is being exported to Dominica.
    And on top of that we will further subjugate our foreign policy to the whims and caprice of a Venezuelan whose personal ambitions transcends every norm of decency the civilized world has known.
    We expect relations between our country that has tradtionally been an ally of the United States, to suffer as Chavez will continue to lead some of our leaders in the OECS down a path that leads to Iran and other rogue nations. Chavez has demonstrated his ability to bribe our leaders with oil and other perks if they follow him blindly in his foreign policy escapades including the sham referred to as ALBA.
    So yes, relations with Venezuela will deepen, but not in ways that will benefit Dominica in the long run.
    The legacy of Chavez in Venezuela include oficial corruption, economic inefficiency and stagnation, rampant crime, political polarization etc. Does this not sound like something that is happening in Dominica?
    I wish I could say that the re-election of Chavez is good for Dominica. Only a short sighted person who is content to feed off crumbs from Chavez’s table would conclude that the reelction of a tyrant and enemy of real democracy and free enterprise is good for Dominica.

    • Roof top
      October 8, 2012

      The DLP is not there for 11 and a half years and we will remain ther for the next 19 years to come by that time we will put everything in place and we will have a very sweet Dominica.

      God bless Dominica

      October 8, 2012

      While I understand your concerns and can identify with many of your points, I see no evidence to refer to Mr. Chavez as a “tyrant and enemy of real democracy”.

      One may not like his politics and policies but I think it is unfair to refer to him as a tyrant. I have heard that term used to described other world leaders that the US and western governments do not like, albeit there are real tyrants who they support but would not dear call them tyrants. Do we have to call all leaders, who do not sign to the tune of the US tyrants? No. The term seems to be used too loosely and selectively and I cannot associate with this hypocrisy.

      In fact, it may not even be totally true that Mr. Chavez is against “free enterprise” per se. I think what he is against is the view of development that is advocated by the Bretton Woods for developing countries that we need to privatize all our social services, allow a few in the private sector to accumulate great wealth (the 1%) at the expense of the masses (99%, while the social safety nets, which are in place to help the poor and less fortunate among us are removed and the wealth of the nations is only enjoyed by a few. However, there has to be a balance and that is where I depart from the Chavez /Skerrit ideology.

      What Mr. Chavez, other left-wing Latin American leaders and Skerrit have been doing- effectively so in my view, is to counter balance the negative impact of capitalism on the poor and marginalized in society. It is a new ideology of open revolt against the policies of the IMF and World Bank, which have eroded the relationship of trust between the state and its citizens. The capitalist policies (as is the policies of the Republicans in the US) are aimed at weakening the state as the benevolent benefactor and the guarantor of social equity. Therefore, Chavez and Skerrit have at least recognized that if the people of the state, could become more dependent on them for survival then the power derived from the state will be augmented and that will be a sustaining power as the people will increase their loyalty to them and become more dependent on them, rather than looking towards the (business /private sector for jobs and daily subsistence. This, in essence, is Chavez’social mission to bring about greater social equity. In that scenario, the private sector is weakened, the government is seen as the saviour of the people and the leader is god.

      Of course, such policies are not encouraged in its extreme. We cannot seek to kill the private sector, which must remain the engine of growth and therefore, to the extent that government were to engaged in building hotels in Dominica that is wrong while no support is given to the existing private sector hoteliers. While it is necessary to have programmes in place to assist the poor and needy, one cannot give support to the economic model of Chavez and Skerrit to make the people poorer and more dependent on the government for jobs, education, sustenance and every aspect of their lives.

      Roseau Valley

  13. St.Joe
    October 8, 2012

    The elections in Venezuela was free and fair, we cannot say the same for the last one we had in Dominica.
    Again Skerrit is aligning him self with the worst of the worst.
    When will he understand that the U.S is the way to go.

    • just me
      October 8, 2012

      how can the US be the way to go with their failing economy??????? they dont even pay attention to the caribbean

      • American @ RUSM
        October 9, 2012

        I am a medical student here and fed up of the way some Dominicans criticize citizens of the united staes of america but still want our united states dollars… why dont those of you who criticize us go for chaves’s bolivar/peso instead. the time will soon come when rusm will fold up and go elsewhere we are more welcome and chavez will open a medical school here and send venezuelans to study here… since we are a failing nation… remember your words it will come back to hunt you… :twisted:

        the united states of america is not the way to go but you all still want to go there instead of going to venezuela. and you still advertising for us to come to your country, why don’t you go advertise for venezuelans to come instead… some of you want to have your cake and still eat it… the party will be soon over and you will be eating each other instead… stop criticizing the hand that feed you… we do not have to be here in Dominica… just remember it is our cruise ships, our american eagle, our us dollars… not chavez.
        I am fed up of your hostility towards us… :twisted:

      • tie toe
        October 9, 2012

        i hope you are not one of them that come here to have an american baby and leave the bill for us to of the reason why the economy is slanting.too many american babies that are really not american babies at all

      • Dominican US Citizen
        October 9, 2012

        Failing economy???? However your backside wish you were up here now enjoying the US dollars instead you well dere wishing some family send you a barrel or a $50 money gram.It is amazing how some you my island people like to criticize the US but wish things could be better for you and for your information I am making $30,000 more in this failing economy than what I made 10 years ago…education baby education…tell Chavez to give you some of dat noh?

      • nedles
        October 9, 2012

        you – THEY can think you can show us your money and we bow to your [email protected] couldnt even make it to a med school in the have your last chance here.. :-P be greatfull to a kind country.maybe if you get good grades here you might be accepted..

    • Roof top
      October 8, 2012

      Do you want to ao the the people that is not giving you anything what do you think we will stay with Venezela and make Dominica an sweetter place to visit

      God bless Dominica

    • Mahaut Boi
      October 8, 2012

      dear st. joe,

      not a single sentence in your post is true/correct.

      the venezuelan election was NOT fair. if u listen to venezuelan radio u’ll learn that many people were coerced into voting pro chavez due to fear.

      maniplation earned him about 8 or 9 million votes compared to his opponenet who lost by a 1 million vote margin.

      the upper class and middle class are strongly against him.

      additionally the USA has for sometime not been the way to go. brazil would represent a better partner to strengthen ties with especially given future issues of sustainability.

  14. October 8, 2012

    Chavez was expected to win 59% of the votes. He only won 54% while the opposition won 46%. It was never a close election Mr. Skerrit. Chavez strategy of keeping the people poor, his giving of handouts, building new homes for people, and his last minute increase of giving new refregerators to the poor might have saved him. He did not win because the people are happy with him. This election clearly shows us that the people of Venezuela are beginning to understand that it is Chavez that is getting richer while they the people continue to get poorer just as in Dominica, it is a young man by the name of Rosievelt Skerrit, who came into politics poor, without a car,just a school teacher and ten years later, has become one of the richest politicians in the caribbean. All of our former prime ministers came into politics with a much better start than Skerrit; 12 years into politics, he is richer than all of them combined and his house is worth more than all former pm’s combined, while the people of Dominica has gotton poorer. Where did he get such wealth from? Did he ever win the loto? Does he have a policy or program that is only working for him? These are the concerns that honest citizens have that have not been answered.

  15. dissident
    October 8, 2012

    So what happening to de 6 plastic (Petro Casa) houses standing vacant next to the prison at Stock Farm. Booming construction work stopped the day before election in 2009. Work resumed late last year into this year.

    When will the economically challenged citizens of Dominica be blessed with the comfort of a plastic house. How much $millions were spent as part of de housing revolution. Clearly these structures cannot be compared to the Simon Bolivar housing scheme. Which was a gift from Veneuela not Chavez.

    Is that what I can eXpect from my government.

    I give up on all u

  16. Aye Dominique
    October 8, 2012

    This man has no family? Can’t believe that a human being love power that much. Cancer is cured? How did he come up with that? It’s less than one year since this guy was so sick….he is in remission if so and hope it remains that way. However for crying out loud, give your health a break and leave Venezuela to those that are much healthier than you to take care of, Venezuela was not willed to you.

    Cancer loves stress, go take care of yourself, at least learn something from Fidel Castro. I am sure there are persons within your party that is capable.

    This power hungry thing is really frightening.

  17. 4u2C
    October 8, 2012

    Bro deepen your ties while the Dominica deepens in poverty and deepens in a quick shrinking economy….

    Fly your kite !! Not sure for how long but fly your kite! I have no remorse for when that kite crumble….

  18. Morihei Ueshiba
    October 8, 2012

    If Chavez policies so great how come crime so high in Venezuela since he took office, same scenario we have in Dominica since medard come pm Crime hitting the roof and all young people in drugs, show me one socialism success story to rival America or Great Britain. 8)

  19. DDGFF
    October 8, 2012

    How can DA support the Venezuelan Dictator, the same one who banned free speeches, jailed opposants, nationalised companies, supports the Iranian leader, Gaddhafi,…and other dictators.
    The same Chavez who modified the Constitution for him to remain in power as long as he wants : what kind of democracy is that ?
    shame, shame, shame !!!

    • YAAA...
      October 8, 2012

      GO check your brain, sounds like it’s been washed ten times over…

  20. anonymous2
    October 8, 2012

    The cycle of poverty continues.

  21. RIDDLE
    October 8, 2012

    deepen ties or he should say a deeper begging strategy

  22. October 8, 2012

    “People have gotton into his policies and programs,” were the words of PM Skerrit. However, Skerrit knows very well that the policies and programs of Chavez are one that cause people to remain poor so he could feed them and in return, they will continue to depend on him and vote for him. With 90% of votes counted and Chavez has a 54% lead is a clear sign that 46% of the people are unhappy with him Mr. Skerrit. That’s almost half! I know you are trying very hard to implement the Chavez policies and programs in Dominica, but it will not work here either. People are looking for financial freedom and keeping them poor and feeding them through the red clinic is not the way to go. In fact these programs and policies will just continue to breed crime, laziness, and begging.

    • catto
      October 8, 2012


    • Concerned
      October 8, 2012

      I am not sure you understand anything about bilateral or multilateral relationships… I would advise you to educate yourself before you make such rediculous comments. It is very obvious that the people of Venezuela love Mr Chavez policies and programs otherwise they would not have given him another mandate. Deal with that you negative and biased people. Education will lead us out of our ignorance and thats why Hon. Skerritt is making sure that our young people get a terciary education in this day and age. Dominicans stop repeating garbage that you know next to nothing about, please!

    • Observer
      October 8, 2012

      You sound like some of those who are hurting now that Hugo Chavez has won the elections. For some of you the elections in Venezuela was viewed as a referendum on PM Skerrit. Again, you are mistaken and seemingly very angry with your self. Why would any Dominican want to se the back of Chavez from venezuelan politics? I know why. Any other government in Venezuela will cut back on foreign aid assistance and so Dominica like very other Caribbean and Latin American country will suffer from the loss of foreign aid. That is the only reason. How sad

      Go tell the people of Soufiere/Scotts head that the sea wall grant project is meant to keep them poor and begging at Skerit’s table. Tell the people of Dominica that the grant funding for the road from Pond Csse’ to Roger is a plan by PM Skertit to keep Dominicans poor so that they will ocntinue to beg him. Tell the many students (Kalinago included) who are studying various professional disciplines in Venezuela compliments the government of President Hugo Chavez that their training is meant to keep them perpetually poor so that they will beg at the table of Roosevelt Skerrit. Tell the Dominican travelling public who are able to fly into Dominica after sunset that the Melville Hall Airport expansion project, compliments grant funding from the governmnet of Venezuela is meant to keep them poor so that they will continue to beg Mr. Skerrit for handouts. Tell the people of Dominica that the 50 million dollars Petro Caribe project compliments the government of Venezuela is a plan by PM Skerrit to keep the people of Dominica poor so that they can continue to beg at PM Skerrits table. Tell the farmers that the timely assistance of the government of Venezuela to assist them fight the dreaded Black Sigatoka disease is meant to keep them poor. Tell the people of Dominica (Red, Green and Blue) who benefitted from the Housing Revolution compliments the government of Venezuela that this was a plan from the Skerrit government to keep them poor. Tell the people of Dominica that the Coffee project and National Abbatoir complete with a production improvement component is meant to keep the people of Dominica poor

      The list of real tangible assistance from Venezuela under Hugo Chavez to Dominica is endless. Thousands of Dominicans have benefitted in one form or another. Tell them, the people of Dominica that this level of assistance is meant to keep them poor.

      No wonder your leader has fallen flat on his buttocks, with chess exposed, glasses still on, cloth boots (not steel plaited boots) still well fastened, brandishing a feebile punch but unable to realize that the count is on for him. read the editorial in the new Chronicle and you will understand why he is so bewildered.

      Now go ahead and as usual call me a Skerrit apologists. Like you “no constitution, no law, no lawyer” can prevent me from freely associating with whoever I want, and speak my mind too.

    • Anonymous
      October 8, 2012

      That’s what election is all about, it Di not matter how close it is, one win, one loses. Who told the people was starving, fox news. Do understand socialism? It’s about taking care of the people. The last time I check people, the people of DA, is not starving peoples. Maybe, the people live him because he save the from IMF bank. Do you remember this, big riots, people starving and being killed by their own soldiers. Guess who rescue them? Long live Chavez….

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