CARACAS, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela's opposition leader Henrique Capriles, who is challenging incumbent President Hugo Chavez for presidency, cast his vote on Sunday in the country's presidential election in an upscale neighborhood here in the capital.
As candidate for the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD), Capriles describes himself as a "progressive" who seeks to continue Chavez's programs in favor of the poor, but with a better administration. However, the coalition he represents is broad and includes figures who might seek to undo these programs.
"I am very happy and excited," said Capriles, former governor of Miranda state. He told the media that he was "Happy about what is going to happen in Venezuela. Something good is happening in Venezuela."
Capriles cast his vote at the Santo Tomas Villanueva High School, in the posh neighborhood of Las Mercedes, a residential area populated by business people and politicians at the higher end of Venezuela's income scale.
Earlier in the day Chavez cast his vote at the Manuel Palcios Fajardo High School in the center of Caracas, a rough neighborhood home to middle- and lower-income citizens.
Separately, also on Sunday, Venezuelan newspaper El Universal published a MUD economic plan based on undoing capital controls and a fixed exchange rate, a Chavez policy that has created a black market for foreign currency.
The document proposes a gradual easing of foreign exchange rates, saying "given the outcome of the serious distortion caused by this negligence, a sharp removal of foreign exchange control is not possible, because it would entail a counterproductive large- scale devaluation at all levels."
The election is a one-round, first-past-the post system. There are some 19 million citizens on the voting roll, as well as some 100,000 citizens overseas who are entitled to vote. There are six candidates in total, but only two are considered to have any real chance of winning.