Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro Spent $400,000 Celebrating Fidel Castro’s Birthday
AUGUST 17, 2016 AT 10:54 AM
Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro reportedly spent more US $400,000 in less than a week while celebrating the 90th birthday of Fidel Castro, the former leader of Cuba.
According to National Assembly member Carlos Berrizbeitia, Maduro — who was in Cuba Monday, August 8 through Sunday, August 14 — lived lavishly while celebrating on the island.
According to calculations done by Berrizbeitia, the Venezuelan government has spent US $124 million on visiting other countries so far this year.
“The amount spent on trips this years surpasses billions of bolívares,” Berrizbeitia said. “For the trip to Cuba, for example, it was unnecessary to use the presidential plane, whose flight time cost US $25,000. Additionally, they brought musicians, journalists, family and friends to sing happy birthday to Fidel. That added up to $400,000 because there were more than 80 people there.”
Several military members also attended, and were in Cuba from August 8 through August 14 with officials and journalists spending money on travel, hotels and food — up to US $15,000 per day, for a total of $105,000.
Berrizbeitia said he feels sorry for the amount of money the Venezuelan government is spending while there are people suffering in the street, and unable to get medicine in hospitals.
He did not criticize Maduro’s trip to the Dominican Republic, however, as the President was invited by Danilo Medina on official business. But official business, Berrizbeitia said, it not the same as a vacation.