Maduro registers as Venezuelan presidential candidate

Maduro registers as Venezuelan presidential candidate
# 12 March 2013 00:09 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Venezuela's Acting President Nicolas Maduro on Monday formally registered with the National Electoral Council (CNE) as the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV)'s candidate for the upcoming presidential election, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

Stressing that he is following the instructions of late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, Maduro said upon his registration: "We should take his (Chavez's) flag, his cause and follow the victorious march."

The CNE has called a presidential election following Chavez's death last Tuesday. According to the Venezuelan Constitution, a new and direct general election must be held within 30 days of the passing of a head of state.

"I'm not Chavez but I'm his son, and all together the people are Chavez. Here I come to deliver the same program for the country that he gave exactly nine months ago, I come to deliver and make a lifetime commitment to our people," said Maduro, referring to the campaign promises Chavez made during last year's presidential race.

Maduro pledged that he would continue to pursue the five " historic objectives" outlined by Chavez in the last campaign, to turn the country into a strong power.

He also appealed to his supporters to remain peaceful and nonviolent during the campaign. "We were never able to take the path of violent confrontation between Venezuelans. Chavez's people must be of peace and coexistence," he said.

The CNE has selected April 14 as the date for the presidential election, and allowed for 10 days of pre-election campaigning for the candidates.

Maduro, who was sworn in as Acting President on Friday by the National Assembly, has called for new elections to be held in the country as soon as possible.

He will face opposition leader Henrique Capriles in the coming election. Capriles, governor of the central state of Miranda and the candidate of the Democratic Unity Roundtable coalition, lost to Chavez in last year's presidential election.

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