Portuguese President to run for re-election

Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa announced his decision to run for re-election, less than two months before the presidential election.

Speaking to journalists here on Monday, the President said that he remains a “proud Portuguese, convinced Catholic, admitted Republican, determined social-democratic”, after five years in office, Xinhua news agency reported.

That “each Portuguese counts” remains his simple and direct objective, commitment and purpose, he said.

“I am a candidate for the Presidency of the Republic: because we have a pandemic to face, because we have an economic and social crisis to overcome, because we have a unique opportunity to, in addition to overcoming the crisis, change Portugal for the better,” he said.

The President said he would not “go out in the middle of a demanding and painful walk,” because it would be “evading responsibilities,” even if that meant “personal or family comfort”.

“I wanted to call the election as President before moving forward as a citizen, and above all in the face of the worsening pandemic in the autumn, I wanted to make essential decisions about the declaration of the second state of emergency,” he added.

With de Sousa’s re-election announcement, there are already nine pre-candidates for the race scheduled for January 24, 2021.

The applications will only be valid after they are formally accepted by the Constitutional Court, following the presentation and verification of a minimum 7,500 signatures of supporting voter-citizens.

De Sousa, a retired law professor, won the presidential elections in January 24, 2016, with 52 per cent of all votes.

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