The founder of self styled Bolivarian socialism, addressed his supporters from the balcony of the presidential palace where he congratulated the opposition for putting up a good fight
Venezuelaâ€™s President Hugo Chavez has been celebrating his re-election.
The founder of self styled Bolivarian socialism, addressed his supporters from the balcony of the presidential palace where he congratulated the opposition for putting up a good fight.
â€œI send my words of recognition to all of those who voted against us. I send out a special recognition for your democratic talent, for your participation, for the civic demonstration that you have given today despite not agreeing with the Bolivarian proposition,â€ he said.
Opposition candidate Henrique Capriles came the closest in over a decade to beating Chavez at the polling stations. With 90 percent of the ballots counted, official results showed Capriles with 44.97 percent of the vote and Chavez with 54.42 percent.
â€œI hope a political movement that has been in power for 14 years understands that almost half the country does not agree with it. I ask those who remain in power for respect, consideration and recognition of almost half of the country,â€ he said.
While Chavezâ€™s victory was in the end comfortable, it was a lot slimmer than at the 2006 election at which he won with 63 percent.
The opposition claims this shows the start of a long road to changing the direction of the country.