European Union observers issued their preliminary report on the election, which was quite tough on the disequilibrium in the use of Government funds and resources to favor Chavez’ campaign.
The EU noted that there were “persistent problems during the campaign” with a “strong institutional campaign at the service of the President-Candidate Hugo Chavez, disequilibrium in the media and the participation of civil servants in pro-Chavez rallies”
The Head of the EU delegation noted that this disequilibirum in information in both public and private media took place without the Electoral Board taking any measure to correct it. She added that the institutional campaign in favor of Chavez overran that of Rosales.
She also noted that they received multiple complaints of civil servants being pressured to participate in rallies or express their support for Chavez. Shes said that while they did not have the instruments to validate and evaluate each case, they had sensed, noted and evaluated the intervention by the Minister of Energy and Oil Rafael Ramirez. She said that what Ramirez did is in violation of an Act, subscribed by Venezuela that establishes that “States should take up the necessary measures to insure the principle that the vote is secret and must be respected and voters should be able to exercise their right to vte freely and without fear”
She noted that national and international legislation limits the participation of public servants during campaigns and that Art. 25 of Venezuela’s Suffrage Law mandates that civil servants have to maintain their impartiality in their exercise of their positions. Despite this, she said the EU delegation witnesses the extensive participation of public servants identified as such during the campaign.
They did note that the process went well and people participated extensively.
Curious how tough this one was, compared with the on in the RR, where there were irregularities galore.