Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez seeks re-election
Tuesday 12 June 2012
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez rallied tens of thousands of supporters, wearing his signature red beret and singing a folk song as he launched his re-election bid.
Mr Chavez waved and blew kisses to crowds while he rode atop a truck to the country's elections office, then picked up a document registering as a candidate.
Afterward, he stepped onto a stage and energetically sang along with a band to a traditional tune from the rural plains where he was born. Mr Chavez laughed and danced briefly on stage.
The 57-year-old president, a former army paratroop commander first elected in 1998, is seeking another six-year term in the October 7 presidential vote.
His struggle with cancer has recently forced him to scale back his public appearances and has raised questions about whether his health may interfere with the re-election campaign.
“I want to thank my Lord that I'm here today. ... It was a difficult year,” Mr Chavez said in a speech to cheering crowd. “Here I am, before you again!”
He denied rumours of worsening health, calling such speculation “psychological warfare” waged by his adversaries.
“We're just warming up our engines,” he said, vowing to win the vote in a “knockout”.
As Mr Chavez registered his candidacy, he walked slowly greeting allies and elections officials. The crowd outside chanted: “Ooh-Ah! Chavez's isn't going away!”
His supporters and government employees wore their socialist party's red caps and shirts, holding photos of the president and signs reading: “We're giving it our all, out of love for Chavez.”
Three giant inflatable likenesses of Mr Chavez rose above the crowd that surrounded the elections office.
Mr Chavez wore a track suit in the yellow, blue and red of Venezuela's flag as he rode through streets lined with supporters on his way to the elections office.
Confetti floated in the air as he passed. Some in the crowd waved flags, and others blew whistles and horns.
Mr Chavez was accompanied by relatives including his brother Adan and two daughters.
- 2 Rihanna 'nude pictures' claims emerge on 4Chan as hacking scandal continues
- 3 Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
- 4 'F*ck it, I quit': KTVA reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 5 Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Rihanna 'nude pictures' claims emerge on 4Chan as hacking scandal continues
Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
'F*ck it, I quit': KTVA reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
Jennifer Lawrence: Leaked 4Chan sex video branded 'fake' by users
Jennifer Lawrence 'naked sex video' will be leaked next, threatens 4Chan celebrity photo hacker
Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Hilary Mantel 'should be investigated by police' over Margaret Thatcher assassination story, says Lord Bell
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
£16500 - £20000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently r...
£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: KS2 PPA Teacher currently nee...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...
£28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Software Application Support Analyst - Imm...