Venezuela's ruling party wins majority in legislative election

20:33, September 27, 2010      

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Venezuela's Hugo Chavez's Socialist Party won a majority in the 165-seat parliament, electoral officials said on Monday.

With most votes counted, the Socialist Party won at least 90 of the 165 seats and the opposition won at least 59, said National Electoral Council (CNE) President Tibisay Lucena.

Yet the opposition claimed it had won a majority by getting 52 percent of the country's popular vote. The strong opposition gains made Chavez's party hard to pass reforms in parliament.

On Sunday, about 17.5 million Venezuelans voted to choose 165 deputies to the National Assembly and 12 representatives to the Latin American Parliament.

Chavez said that with these elections Venezuela would show the world it was a democratic country, underlining transparency, reliability and security of the electoral process.

The ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), with around 7 million members, had planned a congress of 772 members representing the country's 759 municipalities, and this election was seen as "a critical test for the president's rule."

The main opposition parties had boycotted the 2005 parliamentary election and withdrew just before the election day. In June 2009, the opposition parties planned to create Coalition for Democratic Unity (MUD), a coalition including all opposition parties which may select unique candidates for the 2010 elections.

By April 2010, the MUD had included about 50 political parties, of which 16 were national in scope.

Source: Xinhua


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