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SUKHUM, March 9 (Itar-Tass) — The number of hopefuls at the elections to the Abkhazian parliament dwindled down and totals 148 before the day of voting, said chairman of the republican Central Election Commission Batal Tabagua on Friday at the opening of an information centre in Sukhum, replying to a Tass question.
“A decision was taken at a CEC meeting on Thursday to jot out of the list of candidates two people at their own wish,” he specified.
Thus, 34 candidates from political parties and 114 nominated by initiative groups will participate in the elections to the Abkhazian parliament.
The CEC chairman noted that 35 district commissions and 174 polling stations were set up in Abkhazia for the elections. Election lists include 149,622 voters (republican population consists of 240,000 people). The Abkhazian CEC chairman emphasized that the first preliminary results will be made public on March 11 at 11.00.
The information centre, opened in the Abkhazian capital on Friday, is fitted out with the latest equipment and gives a chance to mass media representative to transmit uninterruptedly information to any country.
The programme of the information centre’s operation provides for speeches before reporters by representatives of republican authorities, heads of ministries and departments, as well as international observers whose number is expected at 40 people, including those from Russia.
The elections to the unicameral parliament are conducted according to a majority system. Political parties are permitted to nominate one candidate, but no more than in 1/3 of election districts. Initiative groups of election associations nominate candidates at places of residence. Deputies are elected for five years.
Elections are pronounced valid if the turnout is over 25 percent of voters registered in election lists. Winning candidates are to receive at elections more than half of votes of the electorate, participating in the voting.