Romania: Gov’t considering prolongation of state of alert alongside emergency measures for local elections

Romania: Gov’t considering prolongation of state of alert alongside emergency measures for local elections

Next week, according to the Adevarul newspaper, the Orban government will be extending the state of alert for another month, until mid-October. The use of mask will remain mandatory in open public spaces and on public transport, according to the newspaper.

As for the municipal elections, voters will be required to take off their masks for identification, while those in quarantine will not be able to cast their vote at the mobile ballot box.

In the polling stations, everyone will wear masks and masks will be available to those who do not have them. Antiseptics will be handed out, and voters will have to disinfect their hands twice, when entering and leaving the polling station.

A one-meter distance between individuals will be kept at all times, and there will be dividing banners between voters and staff.

The premises will be constantly ventilated and the temperature of the voters will be taken. Those with a temperature of 37.3 points or higher will be given a priority to vote in a specially designed space, which will then be thoroughly disinfected. COVID-19 patients may apply to vote at a mobile ballot box, as do all patients (as opposed to those quarantined as suspicious but unconfirmed coronavirus patients).

The total cost of the municipal elections on this year of the pandemic amounts to about one billion lei, due to the increase of the electoral allowance and the cost of protective measures in the constituencies (19 million lei).

Election experts estimate that, due to pandemic-related problems, 10-15% fewer voters will head to the polls. Therefore, given that in 2016 44.26% of the citizens of Bucharest voted, this year they see that one in three voters will attend the elections at the most. /ibna