CARACAS -- Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro has named General Manuel Quevedo as head of state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) as well as Minister of Oil and Mining.
He announced the restructuring of the oil company that generates 95% of the country's revenue to "eradicate practices that affected the nation's heritage."
"The time for a new oil revolution has come," declared Maduro in announcing the cabinet and industry shake-up.
Maduro also announced that on Tuesday, he will sign with oil workers a plan to recover the country's oil industry.
During his program "Sundays with Maduro," he also announced that José Gregorio Vielma Mora, the former Governor of Táchira who was defeated in elections in October, is the new Minister of Foreign Trade.
Quevedo will replace Nelson Martinez as head of PDVSA. He will be replacing Eulogio Del Pino as Oil Minister.
Since August of 2015, Quevedo was serving as Minister of Housing, where he has been responsible for giving away houses in the Grand Mission New Barrio Tricolor.
Maduro had promoted him to Major General in July.
Quevedo is also head of the Misión Habitat Foundation (FMH) and the Simón Bolívar Fund.
In March 2016, Quevedo was also appointed chair of the National Housing Bank (Banavih).
Maduro appointed Ildemaro Villarroel as Minister for Housing to replace Quevedo.
In addition, Maduro had appointed Quevedo "Godfather of Trujillo" to work with Governor (and General) Henry Rangel Silva for "the welfare of its inhabitants." Rangel Silva, a former Chavez Defense Minister, was one of the first Venezuelan's named by the U.S. as a "drug kingpin" and sanctioned.
Quevedo is not on the U.S. Treasury's OFAC sanctioned list, though in May of 2014 U.S. Senator Marco Rubio had recommended that Quevedo be added to the list for human rights abuses against student and opposition protestors while he was head of the National Guard in Caracas.
"Quevedo has no apparent experience in the oil industry," says Russ Dallen of Caracas Capital. "At a time when Venezuela's production is collapsing, the company is on the verge of bankruptcy and PDVSA desperately needs someone to turn the situation around, this is more likely a house cleaning to put in a Maduro loyalist and get rid of any remaining Rafael Ramirez holdovers."
Con el Presidente @NicolasMaduro ,Vamos al reencuentro con el camino de Chávez; Vamos a poner a PDVSA como el Templo Sagrado del Pueblo, de nuestra Juventud, de las Familias y Trabajador@s de Bien. Vamos a Construir la Venezuela Socialista y Bolivariana. Viviremos y Triunfaremos! pic.twitter.com/f18u1C828q
Gracias Presidente por haberme dado el honor de estar a su lado en estos años tan difíciles y de tantos ataques. Siempre seré leal a usted y a nuestro Comandante eterno. Junto a los trabajadores petroleros saldremos adelante de toda esta coyuntura. Viviremos y venceremos!