President Chávez has been off the air for 80 days
"I can imagine that had the President been ready to show up, he would have shown up"
With a shared odd sensation that it is not a good signal, both the government and the opposition are at odds with the 80 days of absence from TV of the most media president in Latin America. On the one hand, the government claims respect for his privacy. On the other hand, the opposition asks for transparency in view of the government informational opacity.
"I can imagine that had the President been ready to show up, he would have shown up. I wonder that he is undergoing a complex treatment, ex minister Jesse Chacón told Efe.
In his view, the president's comeback "knocked down all the myths that killed him in January." The president, Chácon feels, "deserves to be seen as customary" and Venezuelans are ready to let him take his time.
"There has been a great informational opacity. Here, actually, nobody knows what is going on with the president's health. I would tell that not even his closest ministers know it," reasoned Marcelino Bisbal, a communication expert with Andrés Bello Catholic University (UCAB).
"Here, the Cuban script is being used, in an attempt at preventing any information from being leaked," Bisbal declared.
Cristian Fonseca, a businessman in La Candelaria district downtown Caracas, was doing the accounts in his small shop office on Sunday December 21, 2008. The Christmas shopping season kept him working late hours into the night. It was around 11 p.m. and his phone rang. A friend broke the bad news to him over the telephone.