"You Have No Idea How Hurt I Am," Venezuelan-American Says of Political Situation in Home Country

The Venezuelan Supreme Court said Wednesday that President Hugo Chavez does not have to be sworn in Thursday

By Hank Tester
|  Wednesday, Jan 9, 2013  |  Updated 11:49 PM EDT
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Ana Vrizeno watched with dismay Wednesday as Venezuelan authorities announced that President Hugo Chavez does not have to be sworn in on Jan. 10. She and Doral Mayor Luigi Boria spoke about the political situation in the country.

Ana Vrizeno watched with dismay Wednesday as Venezuelan authorities announced that President Hugo Chavez does not have to be sworn in on Jan. 10. She and Doral Mayor Luigi Boria spoke about the political situation in the country.

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The political situation in Venezuela remains uncertain, and it is unclear who will run the government if cancer-stricken leader Hugo Chavez cannot attend his swearing-in for another term as president on Thursday. The attorney general said Vice President Nicolas Maduro would run the country until Chavez can be officially sworn in. But others in the government said that Diosado Cabello, who heads the National Assembly, ought to be in charge of the government. "There are some holes in the law, and some holes in the constitution. This is a new constitution that was done by his reform," said Rodrigo Azpurua, a Venezuelan businessman who relocated to South Florida, of Chavez.
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Ana Vrizeno watched with dismay Wednesday as Venezuelan authorities announced that President Hugo Chavez is not required to be sworn in on Jan. 10.

"You have no idea how hurt I am enough (about) what’s going on in my country,” the Venezuelan-American said at a restaurant in Weston.

The Venezuelan Supreme Court said that Chavez, cancer-stricken in Cuba, does not have to be sworn in Thursday, the official inauguration day. Chavez was last seen publicly late last year when he departed for Cuba for another surgery, and has been unable to return to Caracas.

Doral Mayor Luigi Boria predicted in an interview this week with NBC 6 South Florida that the Venezuelan government would manipulate the situation.

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The Venezuelan Constitution says, "If for any unseen reason, the president of the republic cannot be sworn in before the National Assembly, he or she shall take the oath of office before the Supreme Court."

So the thinking is the Jan. 10 date is flexible. Despite protest from opposition leaders, the National Assembly bought that argument, and so did the Supreme Court. The constitution does not specify a time limit or date for the court to perform a Chavez swearing-in.

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That means the inauguration party will go on Thursday – without an inauguration, or Chavez, getting a pass from the government he controls.

"I think it’s ridiculous, it cannot happen,” Vrizeno said.

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