The ministry of Interior, Local Authorities and National Planning decided to extend voting by one hour in 45 provinces “to make it easier for citizens to exercise their right to vote and thus, in conformity with the arrangements of article 30 of the organic law on the electoral system.”
The voter turnout in the 2017 local elections hit 34.46% for municipal assemblies and 33.26% provincial assemblies at 5:00 p.m., which is higher than that recorded in the 2012 local elections at the same time.
The minister of Interior underlined the “major” importance of these elections for the implementation of future reforms at the level of local administrations, adding that citizens “must contribute to government’s efforts to implement the reforms and address the shortcomings in the management of local administrations.”
The president of the Republic Abdelaziz Bouteflika accomplished his electoral duty in Mohamed El-Bachir El-Ibrahimi primary school in El Biar, Algiers.
During a Council of Ministers' meeting he chaired on Wednesday, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika urged citizens to go massively to polls.
The Head of State underlined that elected local assemblies will be “a tool for the development of public resources to the benefit of citizens,” and they will “play a crucial in upgrading public service.”
The Secretary General of the National Democratic Rally (RND), Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia, who cast his vote in a school in Algiers, called on citizens to perform their electoral duty, adding that their choice would have an impact on the management of their commune and their province for the next five years.
The speaker of the Council of the Nation (Upper House of Parliament), Abdelkader Bensalah, the speaker of the People's National Assembly (Lower House), Said Bouhadja, the president of the Constitutional Council, Mourad Medelci, and the chairman of the High Independent Authority for Election Monitoring (HIISE), Abdelwahab Derbal, among many other senior officials and political figures, also cast their votes in schools in Algiers.
Concerning the participation of citizens, it varies from a province to another where the voter turnout to polling stations noted a constant progress notably in the afternoon across the different regions of the country.
Derbal said, from Tipasa, that the local elections “are taking place in good conditions nationwide, with some complaints recorded without any impact on the conduct of the elections.”
However, minor incidents were reported in some voting centres as i twas the case in Raffour (M’Chedallah), East of Bouira, in Boudjellil (80-km South-East of Bejaia) and in Ouled Amar, in the province of Batna.
A total of more than 12,000 polling centres and more than 55,000 polling stations spread over the national territory opened Thursday morning at 8:00 a.m. for nearly 23 million electors.
Voting operations started, in conformity with the law since 72 hours in the isolated areas of ten provinces of the south of the country.
Some 165,000 candidates, representing about fifty political parties, four alliances and independent lists, are competing for the municipal elections. More than 16,000 other candidates are running for provincial assembly seats.
To ensure the security of elections, the People’s National Army, the national Security and the National Gendarmerie mobilized their personnal to allow citizens to vote peacefully.