Fifteen presidential hopefuls allowed to collect ballot-access signatures

The central election commission has granted registration for the nomination groups of a total of 15 people seeking to run in Belarus’ 2020 presidential election.

The Central election commission registered the nomination groups of Viktar Babaryka, a former chairperson of the board of Belgazprombank; Valieryj Capkala, a former deputy foreign minister and a former head of the High-Technology Park in Minsk; former House of Representatives member Hanna Kanapackaja; Voĺha Kavaĺkova, co-chairperson of Belarusian Christian Democracy; Juraś Hubarevič, leader of the Movement for Freedom; Mikalaj Kazloŭ, acting chairperson of the United Civic Party; Andrej Dźmitryjeŭ, co-chairperson of the “Tell the Truth!” movement; Siarhiej Čeračeń, chairperson of the Belarusian Social Democratic Hramada; Alieś Tabolič, the founder and frontman of the folk metal band Znič; and Sviatlana Cichanoŭskaja, the wife of video blogger Siarhiej Cichanoŭski.

Registration were earlier granted for the nomination groups of Aliaksandr Lukašenka; Alieh Hajdukievič, a former police officer who is currently a member of the House of Representatives and chairs the Liberal Democratic Party; Juryj Hancevič, a private farmer resident in the Homieĺ district; Uladzimir Niapomniaščych, a member of the opposition United Civic Party; and Natallia Kisieĺ, a senior executive with a private company.

In particular, Messrs. Ivanoŭ and Piaravščykaŭ were denied registration for their nomination groups because they were born in Russia, whereas only Belarusian-born people may run for president in the country.

An all-time record 55 applications were submitted to the central election commission for the registration of nomination groups for Belarus’ 2020 presidential election, scheduled for August.

In the previous, 2015 presidential race, the central election commission received applications for the registration of a total of 15 nomination groups and denied registration for seven groups.

Nineteen people sought registration for their nomination groups in the 2010 presidential election and only two registration applications were rejected.

In order to become presidential candidates, the 15 individuals who have their nomination groups registered will have to gather at least 100,000 voter signatures with the help of their groups in the period from May 21 to June 19.