Venezuelan VP Maduro pledges to have spoken with Chávez
The Executive Vice-President assured stated-run TV channel Venezolana de Televisión on the phone of having held a chat with the Venezuelan leader for around 15 minutes
After 11:00 pm on Monday, December 24, Venezuelan Vice-President and Minister of Foreign Affairs Nicolás Maduro assured state-run TV channel Venezolana de Televisión (VTV) of having spoken with Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez. They tackled, among others, the domestic state of affairs, particularly economy, in addition to Chávez's health status and recovery.
"Commander Chávez sends a kiss to all Venezuelan children and wishes all Venezuelans a Merry Christmas," he told VTV. The president, Maduro, added, "is sharing with his family the Christmas night."
"During the telephone call, he gave us some directions," the Vice-President explained, highlighting that "he was in good mood, always giving us his stamina."
According to Maduro, "Chávez is to receive an updated report of the inspections to several works undertaken by the National Executive Office" and he "follows up the next political actions of the new Bolivarian state governors."
The news marked an ominous beginning, health-wise, of the year 2015: the Cardiovascular Surgery Unit at Hospital Clínico Universitario, one of the country's largest teaching hospitals, was to close completely on January 5 due to lack of medicines and surgical supplies. All patients who were waiting to be operated on were sent home. More than 10 patients waiting for surgery reportedly died there from lack of basic medical supplies in the two months prior to the closure.