Maduro seeks anti-corruption powers

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro says he plans to request the countryâ„¢s national assembly to approve a law giving him more powers to fight corruption.

Maduro made the announcement during a ruling United Socialist Party campaign in the Venezuelan capital, Caracas, ahead of local elections planned for December.

“I am going to ask for an enabling law to arrive at a more far-reaching process and establish stricter norms to fight corruption, and apply the maximum penalties possible, in keeping with legislation, to punish all crimes,” the Venezuelan president said on Friday.

Once such a law is approved by the Venezuelan National Assembly (AN), Maduro would be granted legal power to issue decrees while the country is going through emergency situations.

“We are going to vaccinate Venezuela’s democracy and public sector (against corruption), so I am going to ask the AN for the enabling constitutional authority,” Maduro added.

The Å“enabling law” would require a three-fifths majority of the 165 deputies of the assembly. This is while the ruling socialist bloc has only 98 deputies, one short of the number of deputies needed.

On August 4, thousands of Venezuelans held anti-corruption rallies in the Caracas.

Last month, the 98-member bloc voted to strip opposition lawmaker Richard Mardo of his legal immunity, so that judicial authorities can investigate him for alleged corruption.

Mardo is suspected of receiving private donations in 2009, which he allegedly never disclosed. But the MP denies any wrongdoing.

In May, Maduro announced that he was planning to dispatch thousands of troops across the country in order to counter the rise in Venezuela’s crime rate.

On March 25, Maduro also accused political opponents of planning to sabotage Venezuelaâ„¢s electricity grid and disrupt food contribution.

The president, who has pledged to eliminate corruption at every level, launched the anti-corruption drive just days after marking his first 100 days in office.

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Republished from: Press TV