Opposition leader proposes ad hoc team to travel to Cuba
"We have the right to go to Cuba to see the President (Hugo Chávez)," said Caracas Metropolitan Mayor Antonio Ledezma, who added that his proposed ad hoc team should include parliamentarians, opposition officials and renowned doctors
Ledezma believes that the group should be composed of parliamentarians, and elected officials such as Miranda state governor Henrique Capriles, Lara state governor Henry Falcon and himself, along with renowned physicians. The team would travel to Havana as soon as possible.
Ledezma reminded that he had asked Chávez to step down. "Two months ago, I even suggested the President to step down and focus on recovering from his illness, which he has been suffering for more than 18 months."
"We have demanded authorities to handle this situation with utmost sincerity. We are talking about the Venezuelan president; he is responsible for the country's foreign policy, financial affairs, as well as military and economic issues. Therefore, we have the right to know, with certainty, what is the present clinical condition of the president of our country."
Ledezma stressed that this is a situation that affects all Venezuelans and should not be handled by a single sector.
"I'm not asking for permission to go to Cuba. I think we have a right to go there and see what happens. We must go, period. Enough with the mysteries, Venezuela is not a colony of Cuba. I am proposing this in the memory of (Independence heroes Simón) Bolívar, (Francisco de) Miranda, (José Félix) Ribas, (Antonio José) de Sucre, (José Antonio) Anzoátegui and many other heroes of our country."
Let us start by looking at what appears to be a discrepancy in figures. According to official statistics, the number of Venezuelans contracting HIV/AIDS every year amounts to 11,699; and as per Ministry of Health figures 43,805 people receive free antiretroviral medications. But Jhonatan Rodríguez, the president of ONG StopVIH, claims that these figures date back to March 2012, and that they are quoted as current figures.