Francisco Rodríguez calls for direct negotiations between Maduro and Guaidó to shape up a National Vaccination Plan
The director of Oil For Venezuela, Francisco Rodríguez, proposed this Monday a direct negotiation between Juan Guaidó and Nicolás Maduro to shape up a National Vaccination Plan, necessary to definitively stop the COVID-19 epidemic and thus avoid a greater economic catastrophe in a country that is already suffering the consequences of one of the worst economic contractions in world history.
In an open letter addressed to both Nicolás Maduro and Juan Guaidó, Rodríguez asks both political leaders to put aside their differences to «resolve the obstacles that have led the country to lag behind the global and regional vaccination process.» The economist explained that the approaches produced have not produced results, such as the agreement to allow entry to the COVAX mechanism, which has been truncated by the refusal to accept the reserved vaccines -AstraZeneca- to accelerate the immunization of Venezuelans.
“The experience of the last weeks clearly shows that meetings between the technical teams, although necessary, are not enough to resolve all the differences that exist around this issue. Only the two of you have in your hands the decision to reach an agreement that will make it possible to avoid an even greater catastrophe than the one our country is already experiencing ”, reads the letter.
Rodríguez pointed out that Venezuela has enough resources to face a National Vaccination Agreement, either with funds abroad or with money from current oil production, so the delay only threatens the health of the population. «The Venezuelan lives lost as a result of the lack of determined and joint action to confront the pandemic will not have that second chance.»
The director of Oil For Venezuela proposed in November 2020 an agreement between both parties to the Venezuelan political conflict to guarantee the early purchase of vaccines against COVID-19 using funds deposited in the Bank of England. Rodríguez also requested that the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) take charge of the distribution of the doses, to ensure transparency and depoliticization in the use of resources.