22:57 GMT31 March 2020
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    PRAGUE (Sputnik) – Slovakia’s opposition party Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OLANO) is coming ahead in the parliamentary election with 24.6 percent of the votes, the country’s central statistical office said after about 70 percent of polling stations had reported results.

    PRAGUE (Sputnik) – Slovakia’s opposition party Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OLANO) is coming ahead in the parliamentary election with 24.6 percent of the votes, the country’s central statistical office said after about 70 percent of polling stations had reported results.

    Meanwhile, the ruling party, Direction-Social Democracy (Smer), has 19.1 percent of the votes.

    Smer leader, Slovak Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, congratulated OLANO and its leader Igor Matovic with election victory.

    "I hope that on Sunday, during some party leader debates, I will have an opportunity to congratulate Mr. Matovic in person," Pellegrini said, adding that his party was accepting the election results and respected the opinions of its fellow citizens.

    Asked about the possibility of Smer forming a coalition with OLANO, Pellegrini said "never say never."

    According to a Focus exit poll, OLANO has 25.8 percent of the votes, coming ahead of the ruling party.

    Chairman of Slovakia’s Central Election Committee Eduard Barany told reporters after the polling stations closed on Saturday evening that the turnout at the election was over 50 percent. According to the latest data, over 64 percent of Slovak voters participated in the parliamentary election.

    A Focus survey, published before the two-week campaign blackout, showed that the opposition bloc could win a constitutional majority in Slovakia’s parliament and unseat Smer.

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