Sept 27 (Reuters) – The Slovak liberal party Progresivne Slovensko edged marginally ahead of the SMER-SSD of former prime minister Robert Fico in the final poll from AKO agency before a Sept. 30 election, highlighting a tight race.
The poll, published on Wednesday and carried out for TV JOJ, put Progresivne Slovensko (Progressive Slovakia – PS) ahead of all parties at 18.0% support. SMER-SSD, which has seen its lead dissipate in the past month, polled at 17.7%, dropping 1.7 percentage points from mid-September.
The AKO poll was conducted among 1,000 participants between Sept. 20 and Sept. 26.
It showed the two leading parties each winning 30 seats in the 150-member parliament, both well short of a majority and needing to count on coalition partners to govern. However, the coalition-building path was highly unclear, with the third-leading party HLAS still not committed to any other party and several parties around thresholds for winning seats.
The election is coming early after a centre-right coalition government fell apart last year and a caretaker administration took over in May.
SMER-SSD, which still lead in two other polls published in the past day, is seeking to return after a three-year hiatus. It is led by three-time prime minister Fico, who is pledging to defend national interests and end military support for Ukraine in its fight against a Russian invasion.
The pro-western Progressive Slovakia party’s leader Michal Simecka has warned such a policy reversal would mean a turn closer to Russia and a threat of isolation for Slovakia.
|SMER-SSD||HLAS||Progresivne Slovensko||SaS||OLANO-led coalition||Republika||KDH||SME RODINA||SNS||DEMOKRATI|
NOTE: threshold for parties to win seats is 5% and 7% for coalitions
* SMER-SSD- Direction-Slovak Social Democracy (leftist party of three-time prime minister Robert Fico)
* HLAS- Voice (leftist party of former prime minister Peter Pellegrini who split from SMER)
* Progresivne Slovensko- Progressive Slovakia (liberal party)
* SaS-Sloboda a Solidarita- Freedom and Solidary (liberal former ruling party)
* OLANO- Ordinary People and Independent Personalities-OLANO (centrist, anti-graft former ruling party)
* Republika- Republic (far-right party)
* KDH- Christian Democrat Movement (Christian conservative party)
* SME RODINA- We Are Family (centrist former ruling party)
* SNS- Slovak National Party (nationalist party)
* DEMOKRATI- Democrats (centrist, pro-European party led by former prime minister Eduard Heger)
Photo: Slovak liberal party Progresivne Slovensko leader Michal Simecka