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Deadline for candidates for senators expires, 233 get registered

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Prague, July 31 (CTK) – The number of candidates running for Czech senator in the autumn election is the same as in the previous elections to one third of the Senate two years ago, 233, according to information that CTK received from the 27 wards on Tuesday.

The deadline for registering one’s candidacy expired at 16:00 on Tuesday. However, the number of contestants for the upper house seats may still change as some of them might not meet the required conditions. The official lists of candidates will be released after the check in late August.

The highest number of candidates, 16, is in Prague’ 8th district, while the lowest competition will be in the Nachod and Vsetin wards in which six people will fight for the senatorial mandate.

Four failed presidential candidates will be running for senators in Prague.

In Prague’s 4th district, Jiri Drahos, supported by four centrist and rightist opposition parties, will face Eva Sykova, a senator for the Social Democrats (CSSD) who is running for the ANO movement now, and Petr Hannig, who also ran for president and regularly runs for senator, without success so far.

In the 2nd district, Marek Hilser (independent) will fight sociologist Ivan Gabal (Greens), Ladislav Jakl (Freedom and Direct Democracy, SPD), who was President Vaclav Klaus’s close aide, and senator Libor Michalek (Pirates) who is defending his post.

In the 12th district, presidential candidate Pavel Fischer will compete with former finance minister Ivan Pilny (ANO), former health minister Ivan David (SPD), constitutional lawyer Ales Gerloch (independent), senator Tomas Grulich (Civic Democrats, ODS), Communist (KSCM) hardliner Marta Semelova and trade union leader Frantisek Dobsik (CSSD).

In the 8th district, former deputy finance minister Pavel Wagenknecht (Pirates), Prison Service former director Ludek Kula (SPD), interpreter Hayato Okamura (Christian Democrats, KDU-CSL) and lawyer Milan Golas (ODS) will meet in the competition.

In the Chrudim ward, presidential candidate Jiri Hynek (Realists) will fight former culture minister Daniel Herman (KDU-CSL), speed-skating coach Petr Novak (for ANO) and former ice hockey player Vladimir Martinec (for SNK ED).

KDU-CSL chairman Pavel Belobradek will run for senator in the Nachod ward against former police president Martin Cervicek (ODS), among others.

Zlin Region governor Jiri Cunek (KDU-CSL) is the favourite in the Vsetin ward. Teplice Mayor Jaroslav Kubera (ODS) is expected to defend his senator’s seat, same as Bohumin Mayor Petr Vicha (CSSD).

Masaryk University rector Mikulas Bek in Brno and South Bohemia Theatre director Jiri Sestak (for STAN) in Deske Budejovice run with broad political support.

The media will also focus on former Central Bohemia governor David Rath, who was sentenced for corruption and runs for senator in Litomerice.

The first round of the elections of one third of the 81-seat Senate will be held on October 5-6, together with the local elections.

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