14/04/2014 - Results - 1st round
Outgoing head of State Gjorgji Ivanov (Revolutionary Organisation - Democratic Party for National Unity, VMRO-DPMNE) easily came out ahead in the first round of the presidential election on 13th April in Macedonia (FYROM). He won 51.63% of the vote ahead of his main rival Stevo Pendarovski (Social Democratic Union, SDSM) who won 37.55% of the vote. Iljaz Halimi (Albanian Democratic Party, PDA-PDSh) came third with 4.49% of the vote; Zoran Pospovski (Citizens' Option for Macedonia, GROM) won 3.61% of the vote.
Although the outgoing President won the absolute majority of votes, he only won 25.19% of the votes of those registered far from the 50% +1 required by the electoral law to win in the first round.
Most of the Albanian speakers in Macedonia (a quarter of the population) indeed abstained. The Democratic Union for Integration (DUI-BDI), partner of the VMRO-DPMNE in government and representative of the Albanian speakers called for a boycott of the election after Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski's refusal (VMRO-DPMNE) to appoint a consensus candidate that the party might also support. "We must defend our dignity and the will of the Albanians,
" declared Bujar Osmani, the DUI-BDI spokesperson who added, "Gjorgji Ivanov has not succeeded in meeting the Albanians' requirements.
A second round of voting will therefore take place on 27th April. On the same day general elections will be organised early - a year ahead of time. This general election follows the tension that has continued to rise between the VMRO-DPMNE of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and the DUI-BDI.
Many analysts believe however that the "argument" between the two government partners is but a pretext for the organisation of early elections in which both parties have an interest. According to the polls they are due to win a majority of the seats in the Sobranie
, the only chamber in Parliament.
Less than one Macedonian in two turned out to vote on 13th April: turnout totalled 48.86%, 8.04 points less than in the first round of the presidential election in 2009.
Gjorgji Ivanov will probably win on 27th April next. The presidential election will probably be overshadowed by the general elections which are due to be won by the VMRO-DPMNE.