07 Apr, 2021

MRF gains seats in parliament as Bulgaria votes for change

After almost a year of prolonged protests and amid rising Covid-19 cases, Bulgarian citizens vote in large numbers for change in the parliamentary elections held on Sunday 4 April.

The conservative GERB party won the election but faces big challenges to form a new government, with anti-establishment party of Slavi Trifonov finishing in second place, and ALDE member MRF returns stronger to parliament after winning 10.5% of the vote and gaining four additional seats.

According to the results from the Central Election Commission, the ruling GERB party finished the largest party with 26.2% of the vote, followed by the anti-establishment party of Slavi Trifonov with 17.7%, and the Socialist party (BSP) who recorded their lowest result since the fall of communism in the country with 15%.

The Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF), ALDE Party member party, received 10.5% of the vote, and is projected to have 30 seats in the next Parliament, a gain of four additional seats from the last mandate.

Leader Mustafa Karadayi congratulated all voters in the country and abroad for the high turnout in the conditions of a pandemic. He thanked all the voters who voted for the MRF and all the structures of the party and its activists, who, in his words, conducted a very good campaign. He said: "Our assessment of what we saw in the results and the media is that Bulgarian voters voted for the change. We from the MRF also opted for change, so our reading of the general assessment at the moment is that the Bulgarian voters chose the change."

Democratic Bulgaria and the “Stand up! Get out!” coalition were the final parties to pass the 4% electoral threshold to win seats in the Parliament, winning 9.5% and 4.8% respectively.

For the first time since 2005, no nationalist or far-right parties will be represented in Parliament as the VRMO nationalist movement won only 3.6% of the vote.

Turnout was 49.88% with a record number of Bulgarians voting from overseas.

According to projections, GERB will receive 75 seats in the new parliament (-20 from last mandate), Slavi Trifonov’s ‘There is such people” 51 seats (new), BSP 43 seats (-37), MRF 30 seats (+4), Democratic Bulgaria 27 seats (new), and Stand Up 14 seats (new). 121 is required to form a majority in the 240-seat parliament.

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