Hugo Chavez is dead. At the age of 58, he was one of the greatest revolutionaries of this new century. He was constantly attacked by the US government, and by the right wing oligarchs of Latin America, yet he inspired hundreds of millions of people and dramatically transformed the lives of the poorest in Venezuela.
He was a committed Christian, with a faith that led to his determination to be on the side of the poor. He faced a violent, US backed coup in 2002, and was brought back to power by the millions of ordinary people who took to the streets in his defense. His detractors claimed he was a dictator, but in reality he won more democratic elections than any other Latin America leader in history.
Even in death, I am sickened by the media's constant denial of his achievements. The BBC continue to allow his enemies (the elite in his country) airtime to call him an autocrat and a disastrous leader. The facts tell a different story. Millions lifted out of poverty, billions of dollars reclaimed from the oil wealth and spent on education, health, housing, electricity and the basics for human dignity.
Chavez said that his socialist project was aimed at promoting equality, liberty, fraternity and the fulfilment of basic necessities such as food and education - he said his work was the search for the reign of God, but "here on earth".
I met many many who benefited from his idealism, including students from poor backgrounds who were finally given the chance for an education.
We who believe that there is an alternative to the barbarism of capitalism, salute his achievements. We will continue to work and pray for a better world, inspired by Chavez's extraordinary example, and his remarkable achievements. Long live the revolution.