Alla Jioyeva, an opposition leader in breakaway South Ossetia whose victory in last November’s presidential runoff was annulled, told supporters at a rally in Tskhinvali on Saturday, that repeat election set for March 25 “is illegitimate” and she would not run.
Jioyeva’s supporters – reports on their numbers varied from hundred to two hundred – gathered outside her office in the breakaway region’s capital on January 21 to protest against the authorities’ failure to observe post-election deal.
Jioyeva said at the rally that she would wait for Brovtsev’s response till January 23 and then would announce about setting of a date for her “presidential inauguration”, Russian news agencies reported.
In a written statement released by Brovtsev’s press office on January 21, Jioyeva’s withdrawal from the post-election deal is condemned as “unconstructive” move “aimed at deliberate destabilization of internal political situation in the republic ahead of the repeat elections.”
Meanwhile it was reported on January 20, that Russian free-style-wrestling team trainer, Jambolat Tedeev, was intending to file for a registration as a presidential candidate for the March repeat elections. Tedeev, a fierce opponent of former South Ossetian leader Eduard Kokoity who now chairs ruling party, wanted to run for president in November, but was barred on the grounds of not meeting residency requirement. After that Tedeev threw his support behind Alla Jioyeva, who at the time said that decided to run after all “the heavyweight” opposition candidates were barred from running.
Commenting on Tedeev’s decision, Jioyeva said on January 20, that Tedeev’s intention to run “shows once again that we do not depend on each other.”
Several potential candidates willing to run in the repeat election have already appealed to the breakaway region’s central election commission, among them ex-head of state information committee Georgi Kabisov; deputy defense minister Igor Alborov and one of the vice-speakers of parliament Yuri Dzitsoiti. Deadline for nominating candidates expires on February 9; the central election commission will then start the process of registration which is expected to last till February 29.
On January 13 the breakaway region’s central election commission decided, that candidates willing to run for president should pass exams in Russian and Ossetian languages. Russian became the official language of the breakaway region as a result of a referendum held simultaneously with the first round of presidential election on November 13.