Belgrade, Apr 2 (AFP) Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic was elected president of Serbia in the first round of voting today, according to an estimate by the IPSOS research institute.
“We can say that he is elected president,” Marko Uljarevic of IPSOS told AFP. IPSOS estimated that Vucic won more than 55 percent of votes, followed by ex-ombudsman Sasa Jankovic, who had around 16 percent. Nine other candidates were trailing.
To claim victory in the first round, the 47-year-old Vucic needed to win more than 50 percent of the vote.
Since he became prime minister in 2014, Vucic, a former ultranationalist turned pro-European, has consolidated his power, and his Serbian Progressive Party holds a comfortable majority in parliament.
During the campaign, opposition parties expressed fears that too much power would be held by one man, but Vucic on Sunday dismissed the concerns as “ridiculous”, saying he would “respect the constitution”.
The presidential post is largely ceremonial in Serbia, but analysts expect that he will move to consolidate his influence, as did the former strongman Slobodan Milosevic and the former pro-European president Boris Tadic. (AFP) ANB
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.