Polling stations in 256 municipalities in Bulgaria have opened in the October 27 local elections, with official Central Election Commission figures showing that 6.2 million people are eligible to vote.
Polls close at 8pm. Where mayoral elections do not produce a decisive winner, a second round of voting will be held on November 3.
Bulgarian law forbids the release of exit polls until voting ends at 8pm.
The Interior Ministry said that 14 000 police are on duty to monitor security and ensure smooth conduct of the elections.
In Sofia, 170 patrol cars will escort buses with protocols from election commissions to the Arena Armeec hall.
Police guards have been on duty around the clock at all places where ballot papers have been stored.
Earlier this week, CEC spokesperson Alexander Andreev gave an assurance in a television interview that the commission was fully ready for the election.
“We hope that with all the measures that have been taken and the additional remuneration provided to the members of the sectional election commissions, this time there will be improvement in the process of reporting the results and completing the records. Of course, analysis and evaluation will be done after the elections,” Andreev said.
The Prosecutor’s Office said on October 25 that teams of prosecutors and staff would be on duty throughout the weekend at all regional, district and appellate prosecutor’s offices, the Sofia City Prosecutor’s Office and the Special Prosecutor’s Office.
Reports of crimes related to the process of electing mayors and municipal councillors may be filed with the prosecutor on duty at the respective prosecutor’s office.
The Supreme Cassation Prosecutor’s Office is also operating a duty unit on October 26 and 27 2019.