All ready for the runoff election, Deputy Returning Officer tells CNA

The second round of presidential elections in Cyprus is drawing closer, as the election campaign ends at midnight. Voters are called to choose between incumbent President Nicos Anastasiades and presidential contender Stavros Malas, in a runoff voting this Sunday.

The two presidential contenders face each other in Sunday’s elections, without having secured the backing of the parties that supported other candidates in the first round.

Demetris Demetriou, the Deputy Returning Officer, told CNA that all is ready ahead of Sunday’s elections. He added that the Central Election Service is trying to limit some problems that occurred before the first round of voting, having to do with advertising in social media and the dispatch of electoral messages, in violation of Friday’s deadline.

Both campaigns promised to conclude their advertisement before tonight’s deadline, Demetriou added.

The first results from small polling stations are expected soon after polls close, while the final results are expected to be announced by 19.30 local time (17.30 GMT) on Sunday evening, he added.

The proclamation ceremony will take place on Sunday evening, at 22.00 local time (20.00 GMT) at the Tassos Papadopoulos � Eleftheria stadium, in Nicosia.

The Deputy Returning Officer said moreover that he met on Thursday with members of the OSCE mission that observe presidential elections in Cyprus. During the meeting, OSCE members asked various questions concerning the elections and said that they will publish their report in two months, he added.

The Police announced recently that it would step up security measures on Sunday, both during the election and during the proclamation ceremony.

The inauguration of the new President will be held before the House of Representatives during an extraordinary session, which will take place on 28 February 2018.

During the first round, last Sunday, Anastasiades garnered 35.5% while Malas, who is backed by left wing party AKEL, secured 30.3%. Participation in the first round reached 71.9% and abstention was 28.1%.

Source: Cyprus News Agency