A day after the crucial election that punished all parties in the 44th Parliament and rewarded three anti-GERB movements, everyone is busy calculating mandates and awaiting for final results. Meanwhile, there is a deafening silence from the leaders of the two biggest parties. And on that note media watchdog Association of European Journalists - Bulgaria criticised the absence from press conferences of Slavi Trifonov from There is such a people (TISP) and Boyko Borissov from GERB. The leader of the third largest party, Kornelia Ninova of BSP, spoke to journalists for 10 minutes today, vowed not to resign and said her faction would oppose any cabinet proposed or backed by GERB.
OSCE saw "massive use of state resources" benefiting ruling party before the vote
On Monday observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), who monitored the vote, told reporters that the elections were competitive and fundamentally fair but "massive use of state resources gave the ruling party a significant advantage". The observers also noted the lack of media analysis, which "offered limited editorial and news coverage of the campaign, impacting the ability of voters to make an informed choice". Additionally, they added that widespread practices of vote-buying and "controlled" voting are still attempted in deprived communities.
Fewer new cases, more people in hospitals with Covid-19
On Monday the health authorities reported a significant decrease in both the number and ratio of new Covid-19 cases in Bulgaria compared to the number of tests made. Only 18 percent of the 4129 tests were positive. At the same time, the number of patients admitted into hospitals keeps growing, with 10,649 people seeking medical attention and 747 in intensive care. 82 people died from the virus in the past 24 hours. On the positive side, over the weekend Bulgaria recorded that half a million people had had at least one dose of the vaccine.
Ex-GERB MP appointed head of Energy regulator
On the eve of the parliamentary vote the Ministry of Energy announced it had appointed three out of the five members of the management council of the Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH), the country's energy price regulator. One of them - and the likely president of the council - is Valentin Nikolov, ex-GERB deputy and former director of the Nuclear Power Plant in Kozloduy. As Kapital Insights wrote in February, the ruling party has made steps to ensure that loyal people remain as heads of key regulators regardless of the outcome of the election.