In a press conference held on Saturday 6th March, the government of Finland announced that the country’s municipal elections had been pushed back to 13th June from the previous date of 18th April.
According to Anna-Maja Henriksson, the Finnish Minister of Justice, the cause of this delay is due to the rise of COVID cases within the country. Henriksson explained that, while it would have been possible, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare deemed it unsafe to hold them in April due to the estimated number of COVID infections being somewhere between 2,600-11,200.
The postponement was voted in favor by nine out of the ten parliamentary parties. The one party to object came from the right-wing populist party, the Finns Party, claiming that elections continue to be held across the globe despite the pandemic. Henriksson dismissed the objection, noting that the government’s decisions are based on the situation in Finland, not the rest of the world.
At the time of writing, the total number of cases in Finland is around 63,110.