Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (L) and Vice President Nicolas Maduro hold a press conference in Caracas, December 8, 2012.
The Venezuelan vice president says President Hugo Chavez is conscious and fully aware of how complex his condition is after a difficult cancer surgery, despite rumors about his health.
Nicolas Maduro made the announcement in a statement issued on Tuesday after what he said was the Venezuelan right party’s “ill-intentioned” rumors about the president’s health condition.
“He (Chavez) is absolutely aware of how complex the post-operative condition is.”
Rumors regarding the health condition of the Venezuelan president have surfaced on social networks. Some claimed that Chavez was on ‘life support’ or ‘dead.’
“What is behind the ill-intentioned rumors? It is the evil and hatred of the enemies of Venezuela,” Maduro stated. “They are people who anybody could describe as mentally ill, sick with hatred, sick with evil.”
Maduro, who has been handpicked by the president as his successor, quoted Chavez as saying, “We should keep the people informed, always with the truth no matter how hard it might be in a given circumstance.”
The president is due to be sworn in on January 10, but with his current health condition both the government and opposition have left open the possibility of postponing the inauguration until he recovers.
Chavez was first diagnosed with cancer in his pelvic region in June of 2011. He has undergone four rounds of surgery and courses of chemotherapy and radiation treatment.