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Vote buying observed in Roma settlements

A CIVIC initiative called the New Roma Generation (NRG) monitored the June 17 general elections in 30 Roma settlements mainly in eastern Slovakia and registered several cases of political parties offering money, alcohol, food, coffee and cigarettes in exchange for votes, Peter Pollak from the NRG told the TASR news wire.

The NRG states mainly candidates from smaller political parties were involved in the corruption, especially in the town of Spišská Nová Ves and the village of Letanovce, both in the Košice region.

The representatives offered Roma voters Sk100 (Ř2.64) and a bottle of wine if they voted for the Nádej (Hope) party, and specified a candidate on the party's list whom they supported.

The Roma group uncovered similar incidents in the villages of Bystrany and Žehra, both also in the Košice region, where Free Forum (SF) representatives offered Roma voters Sk100. An unknown SDKÚ representative used intermediaries to offer Roma voters sausages, coffee and cigarettes in the town of Krompachy, in the Košice region, if they circled his name on the SDKÚ's candidates list.

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