According to exit polls, Nicusor Dan, an independent candidate supported by prime Minister Ludovic Orban’s governing National Liberal Party (PNL) and the USR PLUS Alliance, is set to be the new mayor of Bucharest. With 47.8% of the votes, Dan beat the incumbent Social Democrat Party (PSD) mayor, Gabriela Firea, who received 38.2%.
“This is a historical victory for our party, the most spectacular result in our 30 post-communist years. I thank Romanians for defending democracy by showing up to cast their ballots during pandemics”, Orban said.
“It’s the first time we defeat the Social Democrats, and it’s so decisively. This creates premises for a Liberal-led government for the next four years”, he added.
Municipal officials in Romania control a large part of budget revenues, and have access to EU development funds.
Until the local elections, the PSD had 55% of Romania’s mayors, while the PNL controlled about 33% of localities.