Former presidential candidate blasts 'deadly' Venezuelan opposition division

Caracas (AFP) – Former Venezuelan presidential candidate Henrique Capriles on Wednesday called on the opposition to end its "deadly" divisions and unite against the government in next month's regional elections.


After boycotting the last three national elections, the opposition has decided to contest mayoral and gubernatorial polls on November 21.

"We need to unite the opposition vote ... the dispersion of the vote is deadly. We cannot not unify our forces," said Capriles, who lost the 2012 election to then-president Hugo Chavez.

A year later, following Chavez's death, he was narrowly beaten again by incumbent Nicolas Maduro.

Capriles urged opposition candidates to pull out if another figure opposed to the government is ahead of them in opinion polls.

"If you know who is first and who is second, what more does the one in second need to support the one in first? Is his ego more important?" said the 49-year-old.

"The one in second needs to support the one in first."

Capriles pointed to the 2015 legislative elections where a united opposition managed to take a majority in legislative elections.

He asked: "Have we learnt nothing in 22 years" of the current populist government's grip on power?

"In 2015 we were millions and we won."

Despite the decision to contest the election, the fractured opposition has been unable to agree on unified candidates.

Without them, candidates aligned to Maduro's United Socialist Party "will win," said Capriles.