2021 presidential elections in Bulgaria: GERB-supported Gerdzhikov-Miteva ticket introduced

The candidacy of the Rector of Sofia University Anastas Gerdzhikov and Vice-President Colonel Nevyana Miteva in the presidential elections in Bulgaria in November 2021 was presented at a ceremony on October 3 in Sofia.

The Gerdzhikov-Miteva-Ticket is officially nominated by an initiative committee with more than 70 members, including well-known personalities and academics, and is supported by Boiko Borissov’s GERB-UDF coalition with non-partisan status.

“I’m not a politician, I don’t think and speak like one, and I imagine that I won’t become one,” said Gerdzhikov, who has headed the University of Sofia since 2015.

“I am not a party member, I am not a candidate of the party and I expect the support of all citizens who recognize the need to lend a hand to save us from the current situation,” said Gerdzhikov.

He said he accepted the nomination because “I believe everyone has to pay back at some point in their life what they have received from their country and compatriots”.

He promised his campaign would be positive and said the goal was to restore normalcy to political relations. Members of the initiative committee, who spoke to journalists at the kick-off event, emphasized the difference between Gerdzhikov and incumbent President Roumen Radev, who is seeking a second term, and accused Radev of creating division in the nation.

“I am a Bulgarian like you,” said Gerdzhikov, “who is ready to take responsibility and pay the price for having contributed at least a little to the union. When I say association, I don’t mean politicians and parties, but the people and the nation, ”he said.

In the presidential elections in Bulgaria on November 14th, Radev has the support of the Bulgarian Socialist Party, the ITN of Slavi Trifonov and the party We set the change from Kiril Petkov and Assen Vassilev as well as some smaller formations.

The Movement for Rights and Freedoms has announced that it will nominate its own presidential candidate, but has indicated that it would support Gerdzhikov should the election go into a second round between Radev and Gerdzhikov.

The Justice for All initiative, which has been campaigning for real judicial reform in Bulgaria for several years, has announced that it will nominate the outgoing chief of the Supreme Court of Cassation, Lozan Panov, for president. Panov’s vice-presidential candidate is journalist Maria Kassimova.

In an interview with Bulgarian National Radio on October 3rd, the co-chairman of the Bulgarian Democratic Coalition, Hristo Ivanov, said it was natural for the coalition to support Panov’s candidacy. The constituent parties of democratic Bulgaria are discussing the matter.

The presidential election will also feature a number of candidacies from ultra-nationalist and far-right parties, including Valeri Simeonov of the National Front for the Rescue of Bulgaria and Volen Siderov, the leader of Ataka. The pro-Russian party Vuzrazhdane nominated its chairman, Kostadin Kostadinov, as a candidate for president.

On the same day as the presidential election in November, Bulgarians are going to parliamentary elections for the third time this year, after the previous two failed to produce an elected government.

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