Moldova’s three parties that campaigned on a promise of continued close ties with the European Union have won 55 of 101 seats in the country’s parliament, according to final results made public by election authorities late on December 5.
The results have to be validated by the country’s constitutional court, with the two parties in opposition, the Socialists and Communists, already asking the court to invalidate the outcome of the election and order a new vote. The Socialists argued that the election was negatively impacted by the low number of voting stations opened in Russia, while the Communists presented a longer list of grievances, including suspicions of vote-rigging.
The Socialists, who have promised to denounce the association and free-trade agreement with the EU, will have the largest number of seats in the new legislature, despite final figures showing only a slim lead over the Liberal-Democrat party of prime minister Iurie Leanca.
Despite taking a large lead early on, the Socialists saw their advantage erode as the vote count went on and finished with 20.5 per cent of the vote, compared to 20.2 per cent for the Liberal-Democrats. The Socialists will have 25 seats in the new parliament and the Liberal-Democrats will have 23 MPs.
Third-placed Communists received 17.5 per cent of the votes and will have 21 seats, followed by the Democrats with 15.8 per cent and 19 seats. The Liberals got 9.7 per cent of the votes and will have 13 MPs.
The Liberal-Democrats, Democrats and Liberals have already started talks on a new coalition agreement even before the final results were announced, but gave no time frame on how long the negotiations might last.
The three parties governed together between 2010/13, when the Liberals joined a motion of no confidence against prime minister Vlad Filat, the Liberal-Democrat leader. A splinter group of Liberal MPs backed Leanca, Filat’s deputy in the party, as prime minister and ensured a majority in the previous legislature, while the Liberal party remained in opposition and its relationship with Leanca’s cabinet was acrimonious at times.
(Ballot boxes used in Moldova’s parliamentary elections on November 30. Photo: cec.md)