Petr David Josek / AP
PRAGUE – The centrist party of Prime Minister Andrej Babis on Saturday narrowly lost in the Czech Republic’s parliamentary elections, a surprise development that could mean the end of the power of the populist billionaire in power.
The two -day election to fill 200 seats in the Czech Republic’s lower house of parliament took place shortly after the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists reported details of Babis ’overseas financial dealings in a project called“ Pandora Papers. ” Babis, 67, denied wrongdoing.
Counting votes from 99.7% of ballot stations, the Czech Statistics Office said that Together, a liberal-conservative coalition of three parties, which got 27.7% of the vote, defeated the ANO (Yes) party. of Babis, which won 27.2%.
In another blow to the country’s populists, another central liberal coalition of the Pirate Party and STAN, a group of mayors, received 15.5% of the vote to finish third, the statistics office reported.
The two coalitions have enough support together to create a new government.