Saturday, July 30, 2011

Chavez turns 57 ...vowing to stay in power until 2031

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez sang, danced and said he intends to stay in power for two more decades as he celebrated his 57th birthday looking ahead to months of cancer treatment.

Chavez rallied a crowd of cheering supporters from the balcony of the presidential palace on Thursday, waving a large Venezuelan flag and briefly wrapping himself in it. He said he expects to lose his hair soon as a result of chemotherapy and that a long process of treatment lies ahead.

"This is going to be various months all of this year, but I'm going to continue in charge of my government functions," Chavez said.

He mixed serious statements about his upcoming treatment with the ecstatic rallying cries of a leader already in pre-campaign mode ahead of the 2012 election. (more)