The Permanent Electoral Authority (AEP) has warned on Friday that, after 33 days since the website www.votstrainatate.ro has been functioning, the number of the Romanian citizens who registered as voters from abroad is “disappointingly low”, considering there are only 13 days left for registrations.
AEP President, Constantin Mitulețu-Buică, has called on the Romanians from Diaspora to register on www.votstrainatate.ro, “so that the Romanian authorities should set up polling stations according to the number of registrations, and not based on some information rumoured in the public space on the number of Romanians who would live in a certain locality or state”.
The Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs estimates at least 900 polling stations are needed abroad, however AEP argues this number is not endorsed by the clear intention of the Romanians to vote in the presidential election due this autumn.
“If 441 polling stations were established abroad for the EP elections of May 26 and almost 400,000 Romanian citizens voted, now the MFA forecast shows that at least 900 polling stations must be set up, but these estimates are not backed by a clear intention of voting in the presidential ballot this year“, reads an AEP press release.
Romanians from Diaspora who are registering to vote online are entitled to vote for the presidential election’s first round during three days, November 8, 9 and 10 and for another three days in the runoffs, November 22, 23 and 24.
Under the law, is at least 100 citizens from the same locality or group of localities are registering to vote, a new polling station is to be set up for them.
The AEP chief says he expects at least almost 400,000 Romanians who voted in the EP elections, some queuing for hours to cast their vote, to also register for the presidential election.
He also says that, based on the requests filed so far by the Romanians abroad, not even ten polling stations could be legally established.
Only 13,800 voters were registered until Thursday, August 29, at 4 p.m. on www.votstrainatate.ro for the vote in a polling station and only 14,041 for the postal vote. UK, Germany and Spain top the registration ranking, however with a low number compared to the number of Romanian citizens who voted in the EP elections on May 26, 2019.