Ruling GERB Party Vows to Back Opposition BSP's Demand to Curb ‘Voter Tourism’
Bulgaria’s ruling GERB party will back a proposal of opposition Socialists to annul fictitious residence registrations made with the purpose of increasing voter base ahead of this year’s local elections.
The fact that the proposal had been made by the Bulgarian Socialist Party doesn’t mean that GERB should turn it down, Borisov said in Parliament in Wednesday.
BSP MP Maya Manolova said earlier that over 100,000 people had recently made their residence registrations in locations different from their usual place of residence to meet the provision requiring voters to have lived in those locations for at least six months prior to municipal elections.
To be able to cast ballots in local elections in a certain region, Bulgarian voters should have been registered as residing there for at least six months before the vote. With municipal elections set for 25 October, there have been cases of dozens of newcomers being registered as living in a single apartment or little house, mostly in small towns and villages, in recent months, according to local media reports.
The so-called voter tourism and allegedly related manipulated vote have often been blamed for distorting election results in Bulgaria since the fall of communism in 1989. Political parties have often been trading accusations of artificially boosting their voter base in some regions by bringing in additional voters who have their permament residence registration in other regions.
Borisov also said that prosecution authorities were investigating claims of alleged wrongdoing and if there was enough evidence, the fictitious residence registrations would be cancelled.
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