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Kotleba feeling strong before second round

BANSKÁ Bystrica Region returned the most surprising election result after the leader of the far-right People's Party-Our Slovakia (ĽSNS), Marian Kotleba, advanced to the second round of the regional governor election with over 21 percent of the vote. In the run-off he will face incumbent regional president Vladimír Maňka of Smer, who received 49.5 percent of the vote, falling short of the 50 percent required for victory by just half a percent.

BANSKÁ Bystrica Region returned the most surprising election result after the leader of the far-right People's Party-Our Slovakia (ĽSNS), Marian Kotleba, advanced to the second round of the regional governor election with over 21 percent of the vote. In the run-off he will face incumbent regional president Vladimír Maňka of Smer, who received 49.5 percent of the vote, falling short of the 50 percent required for victory by just half a percent.

The run-off takes place on November 23.

Kotleba succeeded in pushing centre-right candidate Ľudovít Kaník of the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) out of the contest.

"I'd like to thank all the voters,” Kotleba said, as quoted by the TASR newsiwre. “I won't respond to the invectives made by Maňka and Prime Minister Robert Fico. I only state that we've invested a mere €5,000 into the election campaign, we haven't had any billboards, and despite this I've received more votes to the regional council than any other Smer candidate throughout Slovakia. If I remain in the regional council [i.e. if he isn't elected governor, he currently isn't a councillor - ed. note], I'll strive for the most effective use of funds and providing the people with maximum information."

Kotleba said that he was not interested in discussing possible alliances with other parties ahead of the run-off.

"There are parties that have distanced themselves from us, so we're distancing ourselves from them," he said.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports
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