Venezuela President Hugo Chavez won a referendum to eliminate term limits Sunday and vowed to remain in power for at least another decade to complete his socialist revolution. Opponents accepted defeat but said Chavez is becoming a dictator.
Fireworks exploded in the sky and caravans of supporters celebrated in the streets, waving red flags and honking horns. Thousands of people gathered outside Miraflores Palace, where the former paratroop commander appeared on a balcony to sing the national anthem and address the crowd.
“Those who voted ‘yes’ today voted for socialism, for revolution,” Chavez said. He called the victory — which allows all public officials to run for re-election indefinitely — a mandate to speed his transformation of Venezuela into a socialist state.