The President of the Electoral Commission, Maximilien Gauvier, has announced the date for the upcoming parliamentary and regional elections, following at least two months of delay: May 20, 2018.
The tardy announcement comes following weeks of uncertainty. Earlier in March, Gauvier had suggested the Commission lacked the necessary budget to organize both the parliamentary and regional elections, which are to be held in all the prefectures of the Southern regions. Some voices had suggested the Commission would ask Parliament to declare a state of emergency in order to postpone the election date, as under the new Constitution, a legislature may not sit for more than a year unless a state of emergency is in place.
Despite the setbacks, Gauvier assured the elections will be held with complete regularity. The official campaigning period is expected to start promptly, though parties have been holding “off-campaign” events since late January. Polls show a considerable increase in support for the newly formed Democratic Party, with the Liberals trailing closely behind. The Artists appear unable to break the 10% ceiling, even as the recently returned leader Shounn Virny makes grand promises of reform.