Opposition leader urges top court to rule on presidential inauguration
Venezuela's Miranda state Governor Henrique Capriles Radonski said that the country awaits the Supreme Court of Justice's construction on what the Constitution provides for in the event the president-elect is not sworn in next January 10 to begin his new constitutional term in office
The opposition leader told the Government that the opposition does not intend to call upon the people to rally in support of what is already stated in the Constitution. "We look forward to engaging in dialogue until the very end. We are not going to fall for that. Is that what the Government wants?" he wondered. "The country's problem is not about January 10," but the issues that need to be solved such as insecurity.
Capriles asserted that the Government seeks to set up a trap for the opposition by not complying with the Constitution.
The opposition leader rejected the fact that just 48 hours ahead of Hugo Chávez's swearing in-ceremony, the Government has not been able to inform the country whether Chávez will attend the event, and has allowed officials to spread rumors concerning Chávez's appearance. "They do not speak straight forward to Venezuelans about what may happen next January 10."
He also condemned the Government's plans to invite some foreign presidents to come to Venezuela to "endorse" the infringement of the Constitution. "I call upon the Latin American presidents not to take part in the political game of a party."
According to Capriles, the opposition has never suggested that President Hugo Chávez will no longer be the elected leader if he fails to show up for his inauguration. However, "constitutionally, one presidential term ends on January 10 and another one begins."
"This is not a monarchy. This is not the Cuban system either, where one person holds the presidential office after another without holding election. Here, leaders are elected. People chose neither Vice-President Nicolás Maduro nor the incumbent ministers."
The opposition leader seized the opportunity to rebut rumors about an impending general strike convened by the opposition.
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As late as Tuesday, February 25, there was some visible response from Gabriela Ramírez's office. Representatives of the Office of the Ombudswoman would visit independent human rights watch groups to find what happened in connection with repression of protests. That day, they visited NGO Provea. The next day, they met with the attorneys of NGO Venezuelan Criminal Forum. They pursued specific data because -they argued- no claims of human rights violations of demonstrators had been filed with the Office of the Ombudswoman.