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Venezuela's Hugo Chavez wins fourth term

  • Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has secured a fourth term in office after defeating Henrique Capriles.

    Chavez won 54 percent of the vote, the electoral council announced, with turnout at about 81 percent.

    Left-wing Chavez, first elected in 1998, has vowed to be “a better president” and pledged to continue what he calls his socialist revolution while opposition leader Capriles has vowed to restore economic growth.

    Almost 19 million Venezuelans were eligible to vote in the election.

    Chavez, 58, was diagnosed with cancer last year but says he has now recovered.

    Chavez has already nationalized key sectors of the economy and will use his fourth term to fulfil his "Bolivarian Revolution" towards socialism.

    Venezuela is a major oil producer and high prices for the commodity has enabled his government to fund health-care, education and social housing.

    However, the opposition claims the president's policies have led to excess red tape and accuses Chavez of authoritarianism.

    They say a lack of investment in Venezuela's oil industry has led to a drop in production.