Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro flashes a victory sign to supporters during a ceremony formalizing his candidacy as a candidate for the upcoming presidential election, at the National Electoral Council in Caracas, Venezuela, Feb 27, 2018. (ARIANA CUBILLOS / AP)
CARACAS – Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday registered his candidacy for the presidential election on April 22.
Nicolas Maduro is quite likely to win as most of the opposition parties have refused to take part in the election
"I made a formal delivery (of my candidacy) ... to become the presidential candidate," Maduro said at the National Electoral Council (CNE).
While handing over his registration to CNE, Maduro also presented his Plan for the Nation 2019-2025 which he said had been consulted by over 3.5 million Venezuelans.
The ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), the recently created Movimiento Somos Venezuela (We Are Venezuela Movement), the Tupamaro Movement, Patria Para Todos (PPT), the Alliance for Change Movement and the Communist Party of Venezuela (PCV), among others, backed Maduro's candidacy.
The elections were brought forward to April 22, and Maduro is quite likely to win as most of the opposition parties have refused to take part in the election.
Meanwhile, Henri Falcon, a former governor and retired military officer, broke ranks with the opposition coalition Tuesday by challenging Maduro in the upcoming presidential election.
Supporters gather at Diego Ibarra square to listen Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro speak after a ceremony formalizing Maduro's candidacy as a candidate for the upcoming presidential election, in Caracas, Venezuela, Feb 27, 2018. (ARIANA CUBILLOS / AP)
He became the only major politician so far to take on Maduro.
Falcon once served as a top aide to the late President Hugo Chavez, but he later broke with him and joined the opposition, heading the minority Advanced Progressive party.
A little-known television evangelist, the Rev Javier Bertucci, has said he will also run against Maduro.
Filing his election papers, Falcon said: "We are going to win. We are sure of it."
In this Feb 20, 2018 file photo, Henri Falcon, a former governor and former aide to the late President Hugo Chavez, speaks to the press in Caracas, Venezuela. He challenged President Nicolas Maduro in the upcoming presidential election. (ARIANA CUBILLOS / AP)
The United States and several of Venezuela's Latin American neighbors criticized bringing forward the election date, saying conditions for a fair election are lacking.
*With inputs from Assopciated Press
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