Maduro declared official Venezuela poll winner

  • Venezuela's election authority officially declared socialist Nicolas Maduro as the winner of Sunday's presidential election.

    The announcement was made on Monday despite defeated candidate Henrique Capriles refusing to accept the election of Hugo Chavez's successor and demanding a recount of votes.

    Rejecting the outcome as "illegitimate", Capriles said there were more 3,000 voting incidents that needed to be looked into.

    The National Electoral Council has said the results are "irreversible".

    The polls were held after Chavez's death from cancer on March 5.

    Maduro, a former bus driver who had been handpicked by Chavez himself, won 50.7 percent of the vote compared to 49.1 percent for Capriles.

    Maduro was widely expected to win the election, pledging to continue with oil-funded health, education and food programs that have cut poverty from 50 to 29 percent.

    He is due to be sworn in on April 19 and serve until January 2019 to complete the six-year term that Chavez would have started in January.

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