Maduro declared winner of Venezuelan presidential election decried as a sham

Venezuela’s election officials say socialist chief Nicolas Maduro has won another six-year term as president from the oil-rich South American country, whilst his main rivals are discussing the legitimacy of the vote plus calling for a new election.

The Nationwide Election Council announced that with nearly 93 percent of polling channels reporting, Maduro won nearly 68 percent of the votes in Sunday’s election, beating his nearest opposition Henri Falcon by almost forty points.

ALONG WITH SOCIAL MEDIA, VENEZUELA EXERTS INFLUENCE IN THE AMERICAS

The opposition during the day argued that a Maduro victory would certainly lack legitimacy because many voters stayed home, heeding the call in order to boycott an election seen as rigged. Government critics also say various other voters were pressured into voting for Maduro.

Electoral authorities say turnout is projected to reach 48 %.

Voters register with members of the judgment United Socialist Party before continuing to a polling post to election in presidential elections in Valencia, Venezuela, Sunday, May 20, 2018.   (AP)

The United States and many governments around the world declined the election even before ballots had been cast as several key competitors of Maduro were barred through running.

Increasing authoritarian rule and mismanagement of the all-important state-run oil sector have caused a deepening recession, putting Venezuelan on the brink associated with collapse.