Poland Sees Zero Turnout in Weird Ghost Election Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

Image for representation.(Reuters)

Picture for illustration.(Reuters)

The EU member of 38 million folks has discovered itself within the weird predicament by which the presidential poll is formally neither postponed nor cancelled.

  • AFP
  • Final Up to date: Might 10, 2020, 12:22 PM IST

Poland’s election day Sunday will likely be one for the historical past books as polling stations stay closed and turnout will clock in at zero because of a political disaster set off by the coronavirus pandemic.

The EU member of 38 million folks has discovered itself within the weird “Twilight Zone” predicament by which the presidential poll is formally neither postponed nor cancelled, as a result of the federal government and opposition had been unable to agree on a constitutional and protected answer.

“We’re in a fog of authorized absurdity,” Warsaw-based political scientist Stanislaw Mocek informed AFP, echoing the widespread head-scratching and concern.

The federal government “ought to have declared a pure catastrophe to lawfully postpone the election” underneath the structure.

The best-wing Legislation and Justice (PiS) social gathering has defined away its refusal to take action by saying Poland’s coronavirus state of affairs isn’t extreme sufficient to warrant the transfer.

The social gathering has additionally implied that had been it to declare a pure catastrophe, multinational firms current in Poland would declare large sums in compensation that the state could be hard-pressed to pay.

However the liberal opposition and plenty of observers additionally see one other rationale for why the federal government was set on the Might 10 date, regardless of opinion surveys exhibiting that three out of 4 Poles wished a deferral.

The opposition, which has lengthy referred to as for a delay over considerations {that a} free, truthful and protected election is inconceivable underneath lockdown, believes the PiS needs the poll held as quickly as attainable in order that its ally and incumbent Andrzej Duda wins.

The president is the present frontrunner and will safe a second time period within the first spherical with 50 p.c of the vote, however his help would probably drop as soon as the financial results of the pandemic are felt.

Final month, the PiS-controlled parliament handed a legislation stating the election could be held by postal vote solely in a bid to quiet well being considerations whereas sustaining the date.

However the opposition-controlled senate sat on the laws for weeks earlier than rejecting it, leaving the federal government no time to organise the election.

On Wednesday, the PiS and its allied Settlement social gathering introduced that the ballot could be declared null and void after the very fact.

“After the Might 10, 2020 date passes and the Supreme Court docket annuls the election as anticipated in gentle of the truth that the vote is not going to have taken place, the speaker of parliament will announce a brand new presidential election for the primary obtainable date,” they mentioned in an announcement.

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