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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Move by electoral officials ‘resolves uncertainty’ over Polish vote: presidential aide

11.05.2020 12:30
A unanimous decision by electoral officials paving the way for a new date to be set for Poland’s presidential election has dispelled much of the uncertainty over the vote, the Polish president’s spokesman said on Monday.
Polish presidential spokesman Błażej Spychalski.
Polish presidential spokesman Błażej Spychalski.Photo: PAP/Mateusz Marek

Błażej Spychalski was speaking after Poland’s presidential ballot, scheduled for Sunday, failed to go ahead amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The National Electoral Commission (PKW) said in a statement on Sunday that, in the ballot scheduled for May 10, “there was no possibility of voting for candidates.”

The commission’s chief, Sylwester Marciniak, told reporters on Sunday evening that parliamentary Speaker Elżbieta Witek had two weeks to declare the date of a new election, which he said should be held within 60 days of the announcement.

Spychalski, press spokesman for Poland’s President Andrzej Duda, told public broadcaster Polish Radio on Monday morning that a unanimous resolution passed by electoral officials “representing all political forces” was a "good decision and one that resolves the state of uncertainty" over the elections.

He added that the commission’s decision provided sufficient ground for the lower-house Speaker to declare a new date of presidential elections within 14 days, with no role to be played in the process by the country’s Supreme Court.

Polish lawmakers on Thursday definitively approved a plan for citizens to elect the country’s president by a mail-in ballot later this year.

The legislation, which the country’s ruling conservatives say aims to keep voters safe amid the coronavirus pandemic, was subsequently signed into law by the president.

Thursday's vote in the lower house came after the heads of two parties in the country’s ruling coalition said a day earlier that Poland’s presidential elections, scheduled for May 10, would be held at a later date by postal ballot amid the coronavirus.

(gs/pk)

Source: PAP