It is not known whether dictator Nicolás Maduro and the opposition, led by Juan Guaidó, will in fact begin another attempt at dialogue for free elections in Venezuela. This soap opera, already rebroadcast and bankrupt in the preceding moments, remains uncertain. The humanitarian crisis in the country is only getting worse during a pandemic. And there does not seem to be any prospect of a political settlement at the moment.
But, this Sunday morning (1), Maduro and Guaidó woke up happy and agreed on something, we had to celebrate the victory of Yulimar Rojas, in Tokyo, and, of course, try to ride the wave. success of the now world record. holder in the triple jump.
Maduro celebrated “the fighting spirit and the greatness of the Venezuelan people”, reflected in the example of the athlete. Guaidó, meanwhile, praised his “perseverance, effort and confidence”. And he added: “You unite and make Venezuelans happy”.
Yuli’s success, as it is called in Venezuela, is nothing new. She has been playing sports for years with Colombian Caterine Ibargüen. The image of the two together in various accolades and praise in recent years shows how closely bonded these two countries are, even though their current governments have become hostile to each other.
But Rojas hasn’t been extolling his political positions so much lately. It is true that he has already praised former dictator Hugo Chávez (1954-2013) and taken photos with Maduro after his victories. But it is also true that he realized that he could not reach an Olympic podium if he continued to live in Venezuela. There, according to her youth coach Jesus Velázquez, “she couldn’t eat three meals a day”.
Rojas lives in Guadalajara, Spain. Born in Caracas, she has spent her entire life in Puerto de La Cruz, in the state of Anzoátegui, once a rich oil hub of the country, today a decaying city marked by poverty. “My origins are the most humble, I come from a very large family, six brothers, father and mother, and I grew up in a very precarious house,” he said, in an interview with a local community. .
A fan of the batman character and the comics, the 25-year-old athlete is an activist for the LGBTI + cause. Although she is far from home, she travels regularly to Venezuela and visits various humble communities, where she is received with fervor. She is also a hit on the networks with her dances. Before each test, repeat a few steps of vallenato or reggaeton to calm your nerves.
“My orientation, my sexuality have always been important to me and my career. Since I started in sport I have always tried to fight for women’s rights and the LGBTI + collective, “she told a Spanish newspaper.
With the smallest delegation since 1996, with just 43 athletes, the Venezuelans broke a record for medals at the Olympic Games of this edition. There were already three silver and one gold.
We do not know if Rojas will travel to Venezuela to show off his medal, or if he will shake hands with Maduro again, after criticizing the regime for abandoning the country’s sports centers and the lack of support for the sport. There is also no sympathy for Guaidó.
What is certain is that Venezuelans today, at least, are having a day of joy in the midst of such a tragic situation.