No breakthrough in second attempt to form government in Bulgaria

Bulgaria flag
Bulgaria flag

A second attempt to form a new government has failed in Bulgaria following the election at the beginning of April.

Antoaneta Stefanova, candidate for the post of prime minister of the second strongest party There is Such a People (ITN), returned the government mandate to President Rumen Radev on Wednesday.

“For us, the formation of unprincipled coalitions is not normal,” said Stefanova, who is also world chess champion.

Radev must now, according to the constitution, commission a third party to form a new cabinet, which does not necessarily have to be the third-strongest of the six factions in parliament.

If the third attempt to form a government fails, Bulgaria will have to hold new elections.

Previously, entertainer Slavi Trifonov’s populist protest party ITN failed to form a new government. Trifonov justified his party’s decision by saying he did not want the support of parties that “have proven to be compromised,” which would mean dependence from them.

ITN surprisingly won 17.6 per cent of the vote in the April 4 parliamentary elections, giving it 52 seats in the 240-member parliament.

Boyko Borisov, now caretaker prime minister, criticized Trifonov’s stance as an escape from responsibility. Borisov’s conservative populist GERB party, which won 26 per cent of the vote and 75 seats, failed to form a pro-European government last week because of a lack of support.

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