National elections begin

Polls open today for national elections that will largely decide whether Slovakia – by not returning authoritarian former PM Vladimír Mečiar to power – is invited to join Nato and the European Union later this year.

Voters at 14:00 will begin casting ballots for 2,619 candidates running for 25 parties and competing for 150 seats in the next Slovak parliament.

The youngest candidate is 21, the oldest 80.

Men outnumber women by a ratio of 3.4 to 1 on party candidate lists, and by 5.3 to 1 in positions considered likely to be elected to parliament.

The most women are running for workers’ parties, which are given no chance of securing parliamentary seats. The fewest women appear on the lists of right-wing parties such as the governmental Christian Democrats and Hungarian Coalition Party and opposition Slovak National Party.

Business is the most common profession of candidates, followed by teachers and engineers.

The first results will be announced on Sunday at 10:00.

Compiled by Tom Nicholson from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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