Villagers re-elect dead mayor in landslide victory

Mayor elected in Romania despite dying of COVID-19 a week earlier | Euronews
Ion Aliman died ten days before the elections

Ion Aliman, mayor of a small village in southern Romania was re-elected mayor for a third term despite dying from COVID-19 ten days before the elections.

His death came too late to remove his name from Sunday’s ballot. When the news spread through his village, hundreds of Deveselu villagers went to the polling stations Sunday and voted for Aliman anyway.

And he won by a landslide-capping 1,057 out of the 1,600 votes cast in Deveselu. Afterwhich a large group of villagers visited his grave to light candles and pay their respects.

A video shared widely on social media showed people with flashlights and candles gathered around Aliman’s grave to honour him.

Supporters held up signs that read; “This is your victory” and “We will make you proud, we know that from somewhere up there you are watching.”

Aliman was a member of the left-leaning Social Democrat Party, known as PSD, and so is his deputy, Nicolae Dobre, who told a local TV station, Digi24, that “none of the other contenders got the same trust from the voters.”

Asked if he voted for Aliman, Dobre said: “I sure did.”