More Seats Than Candidates as Madagascar Prepares for Elections

(Bloomberg) -- Madagascar may not have enough candidates to compete in legislative elections scheduled for May 27.

A day before registration closes, only 88 candidates have registered to take part in the vote for the Indian Ocean island nation’s 151-seat parliament. The previous ballot in 2013 attracted 2,069 candidates.

The low turnout comes two months after the government increased the registration deposit that candidates must pay the electoral authority to 5 million ariary ($1,400) from 400,000 ariary.

Of the total number that registered, 62 are independent candidates and 26 represent political parties, Fano Rakotondrazaka, a spokesman for the Independent National Electoral Commission, told reporters Monday in the capital, Antanarivo.

Aspiring lawmakers have until 5 p.m on Tuesday to register their candidacy and the commission has no plans to extend the deadline, he said.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.