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Page last updated at 15:42 GMT, Tuesday, 17 June 2008 16:42 UK

Romania village elects dead mayor

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Romanian villagers have voted to re-elect a dead man as their mayor, to prevent his living rival winning.

Neculai Ivascu - who led Voinesti for almost two decades - died from a liver disease on Sunday, too late to cancel the contest.

The village's loyal residents still gave him 23 more votes than his rival, Gheorghe Dobrescu of the ruling National Liberal Party.

"I know he died, but I don't want change," one villager told Romanian TV.

In a controversial decision, the electoral commission declared the runner-up and rival Mr Dobrescu the winner.

Neculai Ivascu's party, the opposition Social Democrat Party, has said it will contest the decision.

Some villagers have also called for a fresh vote.



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