Xhaferi to Announce Election Date, Either 17 or 31 October

Prime Minister Zaev offers 31 October, while VMRO-DPMNE 17 October as a day for the first round of local elections. The opposition believes that this is the last constitutional deadline in which the new mayors should be elected, because the mandate of the current ones ends on 18 October. Prime Minister Zaev said that this could be regulated by amendments to the Electoral Code, as has been done in the past, but Antonio Milososki from VMRO-DPMNE says that the date can’t be determined according to the personal wishes of politicians. The debate over the date of the elections opened due to fears that the campaign could coincide with the census, scheduled for 5-30 September. Due to this, Zaev and Mickoski at the leadership meeting in March agreed that they should be extended for the second half of October, but did not define an exact date. For DUI, any date for the local elections that will be agreed by the political parties is acceptable, according to Foreign Minister and DUI member Bujar Osmani.