Despite rumors about the rapid deterioration of his health due to cancer, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he will run for reelection in the country’s presidential elections in October.
Chavez, clad in a red beret and a yellow and red tracksuit, traveled through Caracas on Tuesday on a truck and formally announced his bid for president, according to El Universal newspaper.
His announcement comes a day after his rival, opposition candidate Henrique Capriles, went on a six-mile walk to formally registered his run at the presidency.
Thanking former Cuban leader Fidel Castro for housing him while he recovered from cancer in Havana, Chavez said that he is “here now” and announced his intention to return to the presidency. The term would last until 2019, or 20 years after Chavez first took power in 1999.
It is unclear if Chavez’s health will pose a major problem for him. Chavez has vehemently denied that the cancer has gotten worse after he received radiation treatment again last month.
American journalist Dan Rather reported more than a week ago that a Chavez aide told him the president was suffering from metastatic rhabdomyosarcoma and that the cancer entered the final stage, meaning that he would only have several months to live. Chavez has not publicly announced any details of his cancer.
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