Ethiopia has deferred parliamentary elections scheduled for June 5, the country’s electoral body reported on Saturday, saying it did not expect a delay of more than 3 weeks.
The country was originally due to hold the vote in August 2020 but it was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Since then, there has been conflict in the northern area of Tigray, which will not participate in voting, as well as in other regions.
PM Abiy Ahmed and his Prosperity Party are facing challenges from increasingly strident ethnically-based parties seeking more power for their regions.
The chairperson of The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE), Birtukan Mideksa,”indicated that delays in opening polling stations and voter registration have pushed the voting day,” according to state news agency Fana.
Mideksa confirmed to Reuters the vote would not take place on June 5.
“We will let everybody (know) soon as to how many additional weeks/days to complete the delayed tasks … Wouldn’t be more than 3 weeks,” she said.