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News > Venezuela

Venezuelan University Education Minister Lucena Dies At Age 63

  • Venezuela's University Education Minister Tibisay Lucena.

    Venezuela's University Education Minister Tibisay Lucena. | Photo: Twitter/ @NicolasMaduro

Published 12 April 2023

"Lucena was a distinguished daughter of Venezuela, a true militant for life. She fought her last battle without respite," Vice President Rodriguez said. 

On Wednesday, Venezuela’s University Education Minister Tibisay Lucena, who for 14 years served as the National Electoral Council (CNE) president, died at age 63.


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"Lucena was a distinguished daughter of Venezuela, a true militant for life. She fought her last battle without respite. We offer condolences to her family and friends. Fly high sister!" Vice President Delcy Rodriguez tweeted.

"Lucena was an irreducible and full-of-love woman," Foreign Affairs Minister Yvan Gil pointed out about a woman who was born in Barquisimeto city in 1959 and later studied at the Central University of Venezuela.

In December 1999, the Constituent Assembly named her rector of CNE, which she ended up presiding over from 2006 to 2020. As CNE President, she conducted 18 elections, many of which U.S.-allied countries deemed fraudulent.

Using this pretext, many of these countries imposed sanctions against Lucena. Far-right former President Ivan Duque (2018-2022), for instance, banned her from entering Colombia.

In Sept. 2020, Lucena was appointed rector of the National Experimental Arts University. A year later, in October 2021, Lucena started to serve as University Education Minister.

In this position, she led the recovery of the infrastructure of public universities that have deteriorated due to the economic crisis prompted by the U.S. blockade.

“Tibisay Lucena remained loyal to her principles and ideals, always defending just causes. Venezuelans will always remember her for her integrity and moral strength,” President Nicolas Maduro stated.

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