Vucic triumphs in Serbia, his party surpasses 60%

But boycott goes well for opposition, reduced voter turnout

22 June, 14:11

    (ANSAmed) - BELGRADE, JUNE 22 - Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic triumphed in elections on Sunday, as expected, with his Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) winning a large majority in both the parliamentary and administrative vote. Initial partial election results were announced on Sunday evening by state broadcaster RTS, based on processing by Ipsos and Cesid, giving SNS more than 60% of the vote. The first figure, 63.4%, was subsequently reduced to 62.5%, as further results came in, but Vucic's success appears irrefutable, also considering that second place went to the Socialist Party (SPS) of Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic, allied with the government, which obtained 10.7%, less than the forecast, which spoke of figures higher than 12%. Initial partial results showed that only three political forces surpassed the 3% threshold for obtaining seats in the 250-member unicameral parliament. In addition to SNS and SPS, the movement SPAS, a moderate, centre-right opposition force led by former water polo player Aleksandar Sapic, obtained about 4%.All the 18 political forces in contention came in with less than 3% of the vote. The opposition, which initially in recent months seemed as if it wanted to united forces against SNS and Vucic - the opposition front was credited with between 13% and 14% - it later decided to boycott the vote, maintaining that in Serbia conditions didn't exist for free and democratic elections. The opposition later had an internal split, with the more hardline and radical forces confirming the boycott, while other parties and movements with more moderate positions decided to participate, even after the lowering of the threshold from 5% to 3%. The result, however, wasn't the best for Vucic's adversaries, given that, according to initial polling results, only one opposition force will enter into parliament. Dragan Djilas, one of the leaders of the radical opposition, maintained that the boycott was nevertheless successful because it reduced voter turnout, which he said was much less than the 50% reported by SNS, and said this doesn't give legitimacy to Vucic's power. Djilas said voter turnout was just over 40%, with Belgrade at only 36%. The most recent official figure from the electoral commission at 6 p.m. on Sunday evening spoke of turnout at 40.82%. Vucic's party reported on Sunday evening that voter turnout was just over 50%. According to initial partial returns, Vucic's SNS took 180 seats out of the 250 overall, SPS garnered 30 seats, and SPAS took 11. SNS therefore has an overwhelming majority that will allow the president's party to govern alone and to continue - as Vucic said several times during his campaign - its programme of reforms to modernise the country and the creation of necessary infrastructure, together with the chapter regarding Kosovo and the difficult search for an accord on normalisation of relations with Pristina.(ANSAmed). (ANSA).

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