Chavez Wins Venezuela Referendum-Preliminary Result
August 16, 2004 1:33am PDT
CARACAS, Venezuela (Reuters) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has survived a referendum to recall him, according to preliminary results released by the country's top electoral officer on Monday.
National Electoral Council President Francisco Carrasquero said in a national broadcast the "No" option opposing Chavez's recall had obtained just over 58 percent of the vote, while the "Yes" vote obtained nearly 42 percent.
But two pro-opposition electoral officials questioned the result.
Shortly before Carrasquero made the announcement, two members of the five-member National Electoral Council leadership said they could not back the result.
Ezequiel Zamora and Solbella Mejias, both known opposition sympathizers, said procedural checks had not been carried out on the results as required.
"These partial results that part of the National Electoral Council wants to present to the public cannot be considered official," Mejias said.
Results Say Chavez Survives Recall Vote
August 16, 2004 1:25am PDT
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) - President Hugo Chavez appeared almost certain to have survived a referendum that sought to oust him, the head of the elections commission said Monday.
With 94 percent of the vote counted, 58 percent voted to keep Chavez in office, said Francisco Carrasquero, president of the election commission. Chavez supporters immediately set off fireworks and began celebrating in the street.
Haydee Deutsch, an opposition leader, said fraud had been committed and that the opposition "has no doubt that we won by an overwhelming majority."