VUC VOTE: Prešov, Žilina and Trenčín elect regional leaders in first round

THREE of the eight self-governing regions, known by Slovaks under the acronym VÚCs, have elected their leaders in the first round of regional elections held on November 9. Incumbent Peter Chudík, supported by Smer, Our Region and the Party of Modern Slovakia, won the Prešov race and incumbent Juraj Blanár, supported by Smer, Slovak National Party (SNS) and Green Party, has secured his position in Žilina, while Trenčín went to Smer’s candidate Jaroslav Baška, according to the official results announced by the Central Elections Commission on November 10.

THREE of the eight self-governing regions, known by Slovaks under the acronym VÚCs, have elected their leaders in the first round of regional elections held on November 9. Incumbent Peter Chudík, supported by Smer, Our Region and the Party of Modern Slovakia, won the Prešov race and incumbent Juraj Blanár, supported by Smer, Slovak National Party (SNS) and Green Party, has secured his position in Žilina, while Trenčín went to Smer’s candidate Jaroslav Baška, according to the official results announced by the Central Elections Commission on November 10.

In the remaining five regions, Bratislava, Banská Bystrica, Košice, Nitra and Trnava, the two top candidates will compete in second round elections, to be held on November 23. In four of the five regions, Smer-backed candidates won the first round.

Election turnout was low, only 20.1 percent, according to official results published by the Statistics Office.

In the second round in the Bratislava Region, the joint candidate of the right-of-centre parties, Pavol Frešo, backed by Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ), Christian Democratic Movement (KDH), Most-Híd, Party of Hungarian Community (SMK), Freedom and Solidarity (SaS), Civic Conservative Party (OKS) and the Green Party, collected 48.4 percent and will clash with Monika Flašíková-Beňová supported by Smer, who picked 24.1 percent.

In Banská Bystrica Region Vladimír Maňka backed by Smer, KDH, SMK, Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS), Movement for Democracy and the Green Party, who collected 49.5 percent will face Marian Kotleba of the People’s Party – Our Slovakia (ĽSNS) who picked 21.3 percent.

In Košice Region Zdenko Trebuľa backed by Smer, Most-Híd and SMK won the first round with 48.6 percent and will face Rudolf Bauer backed by the Conservative Democrats of Slovakia (KDS) who got 24.5 percent in the second round.

The Nitra Region will see a second round race between Milan Belica of Smer, SNS and the Agrarian Party of the Countryside, who picked 46.9 percent, and Tomáš Galbavý, the joint candidate of backed by SDKÚ, Most-Híd, New Majority-Agreement (NOVA), OKS, SaS, SDKÚ, SMK who collected 37.3 percent.

In Trnava Region, Tibor Mikuš, independent candidate backed by Smer, SNS and Communist Party of Slovakia (KSS), collected 40 percent and will face József Berényi supported by the SMK and OKS who picked 18.3 percent of the votes, according to the official results.

There were 65 candidates bidding for the position of president – sometimes known as governor – of the eight self-governing regions.

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