Diosdado Cabello Rondón (born April 15, 1963) is a Venezuelan politician. A former member of the armed forces, he was involved in Hugo Chávez's February 1992 Venezuelan coup d'état attempt. He became a leading member of Chavez's Movimiento V República (MVR), and remains a leading member of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela into which MVR was merged in 2007. Governor of Miranda from 2004 to 2008,he lost the 2008 election to Henrique Capriles Radonski, and was subsequently appointed Public Works & Housing Minister. In November 2009 he was additionally appointed head of the National Commission of Telecom, a position traditionally independent from Ministry of Public Works and Housing. In 2010, he was elected deputy of the National Assembly of Venezuela, the country's legislative branch.
Diosdado Cabello was born in El Furrial, Monagas State. His background is in engineering: he has an undergraduate degree in systems engineering from the Instituto Universitario Politécnico de las Fuerzas Armadas Nacionales and a graduate degree in engineering project management from the Andrés Bello Catholic University. A former member of the armed forces, he was involved in Chávez's abortive coup d'état of February 1992, for which he was jailed for two years.
Following Chávez's 1998 electoral victory, he helped set up the pro-Chávez grassroots civil society organizations known as "Bolivarian Circles". He was head of telecoms regulator Conatel during the time the market was opened to competition. In May 2001 he became Chavez' chief of staff, and was appointed Vice President by President Hugo Chávez on January 13, 2002, replacing Adina Bastidas. As such, he was responsible to both the president and the National Assembly, and for the relations between the executive and legislative branches of the government.
On April 13, 2002, he took on the duties of the presidency on a temporary basis, replacing Pedro Carmona, head of the Venezuelan Chamber of Commerce, as interim president after the coup d'état when Chávez was kept prisoner and was consequently absent from office. Upon taking office, Cabello said that "I, Diosdado Cabello, am assuming the presidency until such time as the president of the republic, Hugo Chávez Frías, appears." A few hours later, Chávez was back in office. This made Cabello's presidency the world's second briefest, after that of Mexican President Pedro Lascuráin.
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