Following the vice-president’s announcement this week that he intends to step down due to prostate cancer, Colombia’s president Juan Manuel Santos on Wednesday said he supports “whatever decision” the second in command makes in relation to resignation.
“Whatever decision the vice-president takes will have our total and absolute support,” said the country’s president, after visiting Angelino Garzon on Wednesday.
Santos said he hoped that Garzon would make a quick and full recovery and recalled that the vice-president had been through tough times health-wise since the commencement of the government.
The tumor was found by a doctor during Garzon’s recovery therapy having survived a stroke in June, however the director of the hospital where the vice-president is being treated on Monday said that the “microscopic non-aggressive tumor” did not leave him incapacitated.
Garzon said on Monday that he had decided to abdicate his role as vice-president. “I am fully aware that I have to leave in the hands of the Constitution and the law everything that has to do with the present and future of the Vice President of Colombia,” Garzon said Monday morning, just two weeks after Santos had surgery to remove a cancerous prostate tumor.
The tumor detection follows much debate about the health condition and capability of Garzon to fulfill his role as Vice President. Discussion was instigated after the Vice President suffered a serious stroke in June and had been recovering slowly. Garzon had previously refused to submit to medical exams that were ordered by the Senate to verify his health condition.