SANTIAGO, Jan. 9 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela's decision to postpone the swearing-in of ailing President Hugo Chavez is an internal matter that should be resolved by it's people, not by the international body, the head of the Organization of American States (OAS) said on Wednesday.
The comment by OAS Secretary-General Jose Miguel Insulza, which was broadcast on Chile's ADN Radio, came in response to a letter that Venezuela's opposition coalition sent the OAS, warning that the postponement was tantamount to a "violation of the Constitution."
On Tuesday, the National Assembly, or Parliament, granted Chavez the permission to be absent indefinitely from the country, after the vice president confirmed Chavez would be unable to attend the inauguration, set by the Constitution for Thursday, Jan. 10.
Chavez, who underwent a fourth operation on cancer in Havana, Cuba in December, remains hospitalized. Chavez and his aides have decided to postpone the ceremony until he is well enough.
The Venezuelan opposition, whose candidate lost the presidential election to Chavez in October, claims the move to delay the inauguration goes against the Constitution and has been campaigning to have power transferred to an interim leader.
"The problem is that some people think that if he doesn't take the oath of office tomorrow, it will unleash a different procedure, and his supporters are willing to let the president take the oath a few days later. That's what's behind the legal arguments," Insulza said.
The problem is a political one, rather than a juridical one, the OAS chief said. "Let the Venezuelans resolve the issues tomorrow, before making any statements about them."