Venezuelan citizens will use digital cards or tactile membranes to vote in the presidential and state elections scheduled for May 20, says Tania D'Amelio, a director of the National Electoral Council (CNE).
Highlighting the novelty, D'Amelio told Venezolana de Television that the cards make the best use of current technology and could reduce waiting times. She also confirmed the start of the selection process for those who will administer the electoral tables and boards.
The CNE will provide detailed voter records to political organizations with candidates registered to participate in the elections.
Luis Piedra, secretary of the CNE's National Electoral Office, said the databank will include the names of voters registered in Venezuela, along with the composition of 24 regional electoral boards, 335 municipal boards, 71 local boards and 33,783 polling centers.
On Friday, the CNE published the preliminary list of voters which will be audited March 19 as part of the electoral timetable with the period for contesting the electoral list ending on March 18.
President Nicolas Maduro insists the electoral process offers guarantees to voters, being 100 percent automated and auditable: "Venezuela's electoral system and its guarantees are in the 21st century."
Another safeguard is the use of fingerprinting, which prevents people from voting twice. Voters can also check on the printed ballot that their votes correspond to their selection.
Maduro's government, along with the opposition, has invited the United Nations to accompany the elections. The international body is considering the request, according to Jose Luis Diaz, a spokesman for U.N. political affairs.
The announcement came after U.N. political affairs chief Jeffrey Feltman and other U.N. officials met with Venezuelan Ambassador Samuel Moncada and opposition representatives, including Henri Falcon.
Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez said Venezuela will continue to press the Union of South American Nations and the United Nations to create a committee to monitor electoral practices in Latin America after the "disaster" during Colombia's recent elections, marred by widespread allegations of fraud.