02:13 - Source: CNN
Guaido: Venezuela has collapsed after major blackouts
CNN —  

Juan Guaido has been banned from running for public office in Venezuela by the country’s embattled government.

The ban on the young opposition leader will last for 15 years, according to a statement made by state comptroller Elvis Amoroso.

Amoroso, an appointee of President Nicolas Maduro, made the announcement Thursday on state broadcaster VTV. He claimed there were inconsistencies in Guaido’s personal financial disclosures and accused him of accepting gifts from foreign governments.

Amoroso said Guaido had been staying in “luxurious hotels” without “justifying who was financing his exuberant accommodations” both in Venezuela and abroad.

Edward Rodriguez, a spokesperson for Guaido, told CNN that a ban could only be issued by the judiciary and added that “all usurped authority is ineffective and its acts are nullified.”

Guaido often has referred to Maduro as a usurper, in reference to last year’s widely criticized presidential elections.

Guaido was named leader of the country’s National Assembly in January, after being elected as a representative for the state of Vargas in 2016. He has since been recognized as Venezuela’s legitimate interim president by more than 50 countries, including the United States.

This is not the first time the Maduro government had banned an opposition leader from running for office. A similar sanction was imposed over former opposition leader Henrique Capriles in 2017.

CNN’s Vasco Cotovio contributed to this story from Caracas.