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HomeWorldBusinesswoman Tomasdottir becomes Iceland's next president

Businesswoman Tomasdottir becomes Iceland’s next president

Helsinki, June 3: Businesswoman Halla Tomasdottir became Iceland’s new President, official data from the state media showed. According to the Icelandic national broadcaster RUV, with more than 210,000 votes counted, Tomasdottir led her opponents with 34.3 per cent of the vote, followed by former Prime Minister Katrina Jakobsdottir, who came in second with 25.2 per cent.

Jakobsdottir reportedly congratulated Tomasdottir when she spoke to the RUV during her election party, Xinhua news agency reported. RUV reported that voter turnout among the almost 270,000 eligible voters reached 78.83 per cent, marking the highest turnout in a presidential election since 1996. The margins between the two leading candidates were the smallest in the populous south and southwest. This was Tomasdottir’s second attempt at the presidency. In 2016, she was the runner-up when Gudni Johannesson was elected. Incumbent President Johannesson was not running for a third four-year term. Tomasdottir, aged 55, will assume his office on August 1.

Analysing the 2024 campaign, RUV broadcasters said that college-educated women formed the initial core of Halla Tomasdottir’s supporters. Her supporters then widened to include the young population and others. There was a significant increase in poll support fairly late in the campaign. Iceland held its presidential election on Saturday, and the final count of votes from all six constituencies was revealed early Sunday morning. This year, 12 candidates were running for the Icelandic President. The candidate who receives the most votes wins the election.

The President of Iceland is chosen through a direct popular vote, serving a term of four years, with the possibility of consecutive re-elections. Iceland’s President has limited political powers, including the authority to veto legislation or call for referendums.

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