Incumbent president Gjorge Ivanov was leading in Macedonia’s April 23 2014 elections, with 51.92 per cent with close to 92 per cent of votes counted, according to figures released by the State Electoral Commission at 10.50pm local time, after polls closed at 7pm.
His socialist rival Stevo Pendarovski had about 36.96 per cent.
Macedonia’s April 13 2014 presidential elections passed largely peacefully, barring a few technical problems and with voter turnout at about 47.7 per cent, going by State Election Commission statements after polls closed at 7pm Skopje time.
About 1.7 million eligible voters were presented with a choice of four candidates, with voting to go to a second round on April 27 should no candidate score a first-round victory with more than 50 per cent of the vote on the basis of the total number of voters, rather than ballots cast.
The candidates seen as most likely to head to a second round, should matters come to that, were incumbent head of state Ivanov, the candidate of rulers VMRO-DPMNE and first elected president in April 2009, and socialist SDSM rival Pendarovski.
The other two candidates were Zoran Popovski of GROM and Ilijaz Halimi of ethnic Albanian party DPA.
The results of the April 13 vote in Macedonia’s presidential elections were expected to serve as pointers to the likely outcome not only of a second round, but also of early parliamentary elections called for the same day planned for a round if one was held, April 27.
(Photo of Ivanov: Nato)