Venezuelans Furious over Maduro Spending Money on Christmas Lights

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Many in Venezuela are expressing outrage over the Maduro regime’s decision to spend money on elaborate Christmas lighting as the country continues to suffer regular blackouts.

The decorations were placed in many of Venezuela’s major cities, with the capital Caracas adorned by 22 different sets of lighting, including an illuminated cross atop the El Avila mountain, according to Reuters.

Fury over the lighting was expressed by people via social media, many of whom pointed out the energy-guzzling lights take away precious electric resources while the country is still suffering from regular blackouts that effectively bring life in the devastated nation to a complete standstill.

“The amount of Christmas lights they are placing on the Guaire River at the height of Las Mercedes is grotesque,” wrote resident Federico Black. “They even used trucks and Corpolec [the state-run energy company] personnel to install them.”

Others also suggested that the lighting in Caracas was a way of hiding the filth building up in the city’s Guaire river.

“They could not clean the Guaire river, but they put lights on it to give the impression it is crystal clean,” wrote another. “This is a terrible waste of money and electricity in a country with regular blackouts and in need of working hospital equipment.”

“Christmas is coming to the Guaire River and all its feces,” added another critic. “This is a representation of how Venezuela is today, with the revolution lighting up the shit that Venezuelans have to eat every day.”

Venezuela has been afflicted by power outages since March, when around 70 percent of people received little to no electricity for nearly a week. The outages are known to wreak havoc and misery across the country, forcing the closure of essential public services such as schools and hospitals and making modern living essentials such as a clean water supply, air conditioning, and the internet impossible to access.

Although power has largely been restored, the country is still affected by regular blackouts. This month, 15 of Venezuela’s 23 states were plunged into darkness for two multihour periods in the space of one day. A report by the Venezuelan advocacy group The Committee for the Affected by Blackouts on Monday found that the nation’s electric grid failed 80,700 times this year alone.

Caracas municipal official Carolina Cestari defended the regime’s decision to install the lighting, pointing out that the energy consumption was reduced by using power-saving bulbs provided by China.

She added that the lights would provide holiday cheer for poorer families, many of whom are starving and living in dire living conditions as a result of the country’s socialist policies.

Over recent years, the Maduro regime has consistently weaponized the Christmas season to distract attention away from the country’s dire predicament. Last month, he announced two months of celebrations, declaring he wanted to “invoke the spirit of Baby Jesus” throughout the festive season.

“This is a month of peace, a month of love and we wanted to invoke the spirit of the baby Jesus, the spirit of Christmas, the spirit of God, so that he may bless our country in these 60 days that remain until 2019,” he said in an address on state television. “No one is going to take away our peace or happiness after an amazing year where we proved that we can overcome any challenge.”

Follow Ben Kew on Facebook, on Twitter at @ben_kew, or email him at bkew@breitbart.com.

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