"Twenty percent of declarations of consent [to hold referendum] of the total number of voters from all states and from the capital's region are necessary to conduct a referendum. The lack of the required percentage of votes in any state or in the capital region would invalidate a recall referendum," the Court's ruling reads.
The second stage of signatures collection is scheduled to take place on October 26-28.
The opposition seeks to conduct a recall referendum before January 10, 2017. If the referendum is carried out after this date, the current Vice President Jorge Arreaza will succeed Maduro and will hold the post for two years even if people vote against the country's leader. If the vote takes place before January 10, new presidential elections will occur according to the country's constitution.
Venezuela has been in a state of an economic turmoil since January. The opposition blames Maduro's economic policies for the recession, high rate of inflation, shortages of food and other essential supplies in the country.