Caracas – President Hugo Chavez moved to put a stop to rumors circulating about his being hospitalized due to a health crisis by accusing the opposition of wanting to create uncertainty and calling on its members to make a commitment to accept the results of Venezuela's 2012 general elections, in which he is seeking another term.
Chavez placed a telephone call to state television to assure the public that his recovery from cancer is "going well" and to ask Venezuelans not to pay any attention to rumors about the state of his health.
The leftist head of state made his remarks after El Nuevo Herald, a U.S. Spanish-language newspaper, reported that he had been rushed to the Caracas Military Hospital on Tuesday and that his doctors were assessing whether to transport him to another facility to treat problems associated with insufficient kidney function.
The Miami daily based its report on unnamed "sources close to the situation" who had stated that the president had been admitted to the hospital in "very serious" condition.
"I would be the first, everyone knows me, I would be the first of all Venezuelans to come out and say, to explain or communicate any difficulty in the process. Nothing out of the ordinary has arisen," Chavez said Thursday.
The president has not disclosed the exact nature of the cancer, which was discovered in June when he fell ill during an official visit to Cuba, where doctors found the tumor while performing emergency surgery to remove an abdominal abscess.
It was only after a second operation in Havana to remove the tumor that Chavez disclosed he had cancer.
He returned to Caracas last Thursday after undergoing a fourth - and according to him, final - round of chemotherapy in Cuba.
Chavez said stories such as the account in El Nuevo Herald seek to "generate uncertainty" and called them the work of "psychological warfare laboratories" of the Venezuelan opposition supported by "connections to the Yankee empire."
"If I'm admitted, I don't know where. No, I'm here in my place of work and working," insisted Chavez.
"I ask the Venezuelan people, let's not pay any attention to rumors," he added, commenting that he is continuing with the "tough treatment" regimen that has already included four rounds of chemotherapy and is exercising "a lot of discipline" in his recovery process.
Chavez took advantage of his call to state television to issue a call to the members of the opposition to sign a document making a commitment to accept the results of the October 2012 presidential contest.