Ramon Lopez, the mayor of the town of Castil de Lagoa, which was devastated by the earthquake in 2012, said on Thursday that he was confident that the town would not have to leave the region for months to come.
“There are no other places we can go, even if we want to,” Lopez said at the city’s National Palace.
“If we leave the area, we will go to a neighbouring province or a neighboring country and we will have to return to Castile,” he added.
The mayor of Castel de Lagos, one of the worst hit towns, said he had no way of telling his community that they could not return home to their hometown.
“I don’t know where the government will send us,” Lopez told the BBC.
“My friends who are in the hospital are waiting for us.
They don’t want to leave Castile.”
He said his family had lost many relatives to the earthquake and had to move to a more remote area of the island of La Guaira in the north.
“We are not happy.
I cannot sleep at night,” Lopez, a businessman and politician, said.
“Our family is scared, we are very scared.”
He appealed for people to stay put in Castile.
“The people have to stay here, in the mountains, because we are not going back,” Lopez added.
“They will have time to rebuild, but we will not be able to.”
Lopez was responding to a call from the local governor to take action to protect his town from a possible earthquake.
“This is not a good time for us to leave,” he said.
Lopez said he was in the town at the weekend to visit his parents, who were in a hospital, but that he had been unable to find a hotel room.
He said he would visit the town when the next power cut was scheduled to take place.