Bulgarian Parliament to Elect New Ombudsman
The Bulgarian Parliament is to hold an election of the country's new ombudsman on Thursday.
There are two candidates for the position – the incumbent ombudsman Konstantin Penchev, who was nominated for a second term by the Reformist Bloc (RB) and Maya Manolova, who is a nomination of her colleagues from the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP).
Manolova seems to be the favourite as she has the vocal support of BSP, the Movements for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), the Patriotic Front (PF) and the Alternative for Bulgarian Revival (ABV), daily Dnevnik informs.
It is expected that she will also be supported by MPs from the Bulgarian Democratic Centre (BDC) and Ataka.
Apart from RB, Penchev will most likely be supported by MPs from the main ruling party – Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB).
However it is not clear whether MPs from all parliamentary groups supporting Manolova will turn out to vote.
A candidates needs to garner more than half of the votes cast in order to be elected as an ombudsman and there is no requirement for a majority of 121 MPs.
Although the MPs from GERB seem to be mostly against the nomination of the Socialists, there are rumours that an agreement has been reached by Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and Manolova not to obstruct her election.
During her hearing at the parliamentary Religious Denominations and Human Rights Committee last week, Manolova promised that she will not be an opposition to the government.
The election will be held through a secret ballot and will be supervised by a special commission, which will count the ballots.
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