Venezuela’s referendum in the UK: Hugo Chavez recalled with 93% of the votes
By Aleksander Boyd
London 16 August 2004 – 00:02 GMT – The scrutiny of the votes has just ended in London. The Bolivar Hall hosted about 50 people who served as witnesses of the counting of the ballots. The results are as follows:
689 votes for the SI option
49 votes for the NO option
5 invalid votes
This means that Hugo Chavez was recalled with roughly 93% of the votes by Venezuelans residing in the UK!!
A couple of hours ago I received a phone call from Frankfurt. Diplomatic personnel, acting as electoral officials according to our legislation, suspended the process of tallying the votes half way through due to a last minute mandate issued by the National Electoral Council (CNE) whereby counting will have to restart tomorrow and official results can not be given prior to the announcements of the CNE; this to block the flow of information to Venezuela which could somewhat affect the recall referendum. This impromptu decision was also reported from Vienna. Results of the recall abroad will be given on Tuesday.
In London however the counting was near to the end, for that reason and given the precedent of problems of public order arisen in Frankfurt, Ambassador Toro Hardy decided to suspend not the procedure. I most commend the sensibility of Ambassador Toro Hardy for having disregarded the orders emanated from the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, for in my view the enforcement of such an absurd and arbitrary measure would have caused problems.
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