Counting of votes commences in Nepal’s first polls in 20 years

Counting of votes commences in Nepal’s first polls in 20 years

Monday, May 15, 2017 10:18 am


Officials on Monday began counting votes after Nepal’s first round of local elections in 20 years saw huge turnout.

Election Commission spokesman Surya Sharma said the counting started in several districts of the three provinces where polls were held on Sunday.

“Counting has begun in 129 counting centres. Ballot papers are yet to be collected from some remote areas of the country.

“We have sent helicopters to bring it to the counting centres,’’ Sharma said, adding that the collection was expected to be completed by the end of the day.

The Election Commission had put voter turnout at 71 per cent on Sunday, but officials revised the figure to 74 per cent, saying that the previous number was an initial estimate.

The spokesman said it would take two to three days for final results to be available.

Some 50,000 contenders were vying for 13,556 positions including mayor, deputy mayor, ward chairpersons and council members in the first round of elections.

The second round is to be held June 14.

Some 15 million Nepalis were eligible to vote in the local elections, last held in 1997 and then repeatedly delayed during the country’s 1996 to 2006 Maoist insurgency and a lengthy peace process. (dpa/NAN)

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