Venezuela’s National Electoral Council (CNE) undertook its final test of voting machines yesterday as part of preparations in the lead up to the presidential vote on Sunday, when incumbent President Hugo Chavez will stand against right-wing opponent Henrique Capriles Radonski. 600 voters representing each of Venezuela’s 24 regional states were brought to a large CNE warehouse in the central Miranda state for the test yesterday. While the participants voted on the 200 randomly selected machines, CNE technicians, representatives of the presidential candidates, and the electoral accompaniment mission from the Union of South American Nations (Unasur) were able to assess the functioning of the voting system. The audit was also used to test the functioning of the electronic transmission of voting information to the CNE’s central totaling system.
CNE president Tibisay Lucena confirmed that the test had been a success. “All of the technical tests have been successful. In this audit we verified that the electoral system functions perfectly, without problems and that the results that we give on 7 October will be the perfect reflection of Venezuelans’ will”.
… Venezuela’s Integrated Authentication System (SAI) voting system is completely automated. It can be activated by thumbprint recognition, with voters using touchscreen technology to vote and also receiving a paper receipt to confirm their choice. Former US president Jimmy Carter recently described Venezuela’s voting system as “the best in the world”.