Algerians vote in first parliamentary elections since Bouteflika’s exit

More than 24 million Algerians eligible to vote.

Algerians vote in first parliamentary elections since Bouteflika’s exit

Voting started Saturday in Algeria’s first parliamentary elections since the departure of long-serving President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in 2019 amid tight safety measures in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Polling stations opened nationwide at 08:00 local time (07:00 GMT) and will close at 19:00 local time (18:00 GMT).

More than 24 million voters are eligible to cast ballot in Saturday’s polls.

A total of 22,000 candidates are vying in the race, including 1,080 from 28 political parties and 1208 independents, to win seats in the 407-member parliament.

The vote will witness, for the first time, the adoption of an open list system for selecting candidates under a new election law adopted by Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune.

The open list system allows voters to arrange the candidates within the same list according to his/her preference. On the contrary, the closed list forced voters to choose the list based on the arrangement set by the party.

During a visit to the National Independent Authority of the Elections on Thursday, Tebboune promised that the vote results will be determined by the citizens.

In March, Tebboune issued a decree calling for an early parliamentary elections on June 12, less than a month after dissolving the People's National Assembly, the lower house of parliament.


Hüseyin Demir