Coalition party leads Bulgaria’s parliamentary polls

BRUSSELS, May 27, 2019 (Xinhua) — Manfred Weber, leader of the center-right European People’s Party (EPP) group, speaks at the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium, May 27, 2019. Voters in Germany, Lithuania, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Greece and Italy cast their ballots on Sunday in elections to the European Parliament (EP). Citizens of the 28 European Union (EU) member countries, among whom over 400 million voters are eligible, are expected to vote over the course of four days, starting from Thursday, to elect 751 members of EP (MEPs) for a five-year term. (Xinhua/Zheng Huansong/IANS)

Sofia, July 12 (IANS) The GERB-UDF coalition party is leading in Bulgaria’s early parliamentary elections by a narrow margin, according to exit polls.

According to Alpha Research Agency’s exit poll, GERB-UDF is expected to win 23.5 per cent of the votes cast during Sunday’s elections, against 22.3 per cent for There Is Such A People party, reports Xinhu news agency.

Another exit poll by Gallup International said that GERB-UDF is leading the elections with 22.1 per cent, and There Is Such A People takes 21.5 per cent.

Alpha Research said the two formations would be followed by a coalition led by the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) with 14.1 per cent, Democratic Bulgaria coalition also with 14.1 per cent, the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF) with 11.7 per cent, and “Rise Up! Thugs Out!” coalition with 5.5 per cent.

According to Gallup International, BSP has got 15.1 per cent of the votes, followed by Democratic Bulgaria with 13.7 per cent, MRF with 12 per cent, and “Rise up! Thugs out!” with 4.8 per cent.

Boriana Dimitrova, manager of Alpha Research, said that several key questions, including who will be first and third, remain open.

The official results are expected to be released on Thursday.

Earlier on Sunday, after casting a ballot in a polling station in Sofia, resident Rumen Radev said he expected that the parties had learned their lesson from the previous elections and would act much more constructively and responsibly in forming a stable government.

“This is their most important task,” Radev said.

Radev said he hoped the next Parliament “will give birth to an energetic, predictable and legitimate government”.

The same six formations entered Parliament after the previous elections, which were held on April 4 this year.

However, they failed to form a government, so Radev dissolved the National Assembly and appointed a caretaker government.

Bulgarians all over the world went to polls on Sunday to vote in the country’s early parliamentary elections.

More than 6.7 million voters are eligible to elect 240 lawmakers from 15 political parties and eight coalitions, according to official data.

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