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Friday, 25 June, 2021

People suffer 45-hour blackouts in Guajira communities

In one of the poorest areas of the Western Hemisphere, families have to see their groceries spoil because they can’t keep them refrigerated. Neighbors despair because they don’t have AC or even fans to keep the heat and mosquitoes away.

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By Eira Gonzalez.
Additional reporting by Carlos Camacho in Caracas.

The energy crisis that Venezuela is experiencing since 2008 continues to affect the inhabitants of the municipality of Guajira, who have spent 45 consecutive hours without electricity service. The circuit of Paraguaipoa was out for two days, a situation that left 50 communities in darkness.

Such blackouts are becoming increasingly more common, not only in rural but also in urban areas, including the capital city of Caracas. Venezuela is experiencing a humanitarian crisis worsened by a four-year bout of hyperinflation and a water shortage that affects 90% of the nation.

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Guajira residents told El Pitazo that they lost the little animal protein they had bought with much effort due to the lack of refrigeration and lived moments of desperation due to the heat and the mosquitoes that plague this region of Zulia.

The heavy rains in the Guajira region caused flooding in the homes of 400 families, who were relocated to schools in the municipality, but the places do not have the conditions to be there. During the blackout, children cried because of the heat and the bites of the mosquitoes.
Rationing in Guajira is severe; during the week, the inhabitants enjoy only a few hours of service. In hospitals, doctors use candles to light emergency rooms; distance learning is inexistent because of the lack of internet and phone signal.

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And this all takes place in what once was one of the top producing oil regions in the whole world, Zulia state.

Martha Gonzalez, an inhabitant of Guajira, wonders aloud how a rich country in energy living the worst electric crisis. She denounces that the situation they are living in is due to the lack of resources in the electrical system. She calls on Nicolas Maduro to solve the problem that is suffocating the people of the Guajira.

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