Final campaign rallies have taken place ahead of a presidential election in Venezuela on Sunday. Incumbent Hugo Chavez, who has mobilised support with his anti-US, leftist policies, is way ahead in the opinion polls. “We are going to give a crushing blow to the imperialist candidates and the candidates of the devil,” he told his closing rally.
Some polls suggest Chavez has close to 60 percent support. His closest rival is Manuel Rosales, the governor of an oil-producing province in the west of the country. He has tried to make inroads into Chavez’s popularity by focusing on soaring crime rates and what are seen as oil giveaways to Cuba. If he wins, Chavez is promising to scrap limits on presidential terms, and unite various political groups to form a single ruling party.