Early results show establishment FLN, Islamist MSP leading Algeria polls

Early results show establishment FLN, Islamist MSP leading Algeria polls
Early results from Algeria’s parliamentary elections have given the ruling FLN party a narrow lead, with the Islamist MSP a close second amid allegations of fraud.
2 min read
14 June, 2021
Votes are being counted following Algeria's election [Getty]

Early results from Algeria’s parliamentary elections have shown the establishment National Liberation Front (FLN) and the Islamist Movement of Society for Peace (MSP) have taken the lead in polls.

The FLN, which governed Algeria as the only legal political party for nearly 30 years following independence, has a narrow lead of 100 seats while the MSP has won 80 seats, according to the preliminary results.

MSP leader Abedrrazak Makri warned on Sunday of attempts to "steal" the election in a bid to stop his party from winning the vote.

The MSP claims that results have been tampered with in various provinces to give it a lower number of seats than expected.

The National Rally for Democracy (RND), which like the FLN is considered an establishment party, came in third place according to the preliminary polls, with 60 seats.

In fourth place was the Independent Bloc with 50 seats.

Voting took place on Saturday amid calls for a boycott by the Hirak movement, which led protests that deposed Algeria’s ailing longtime ruler Abdelaziz Bouteflika in 2019.

Turnout in the election was only 30.2 percent according to electoral commission chief Mohammed Chorfi, the lowest turnout for 20 years.

In previous parliamentary elections in 2017, the FLN gained 164 out of 426 seats, becoming the largest party, while the RND won 100 and the MSP took 33.

The Algerian government has characterised the current vote as "crucial" for the country’s future but Algerian elections are often marred by accusations of fraud, with opposition activists and politicians calling for boycotts.

Current Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune won elections in 2019 with 58 percent of the vote with the Hirak movement denouncing the process as an "election organised by a corrupt power [which] is a trap for idiots".