Local Elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina – Political Changes in Times of Pandemic

  • Valida Repovac Nikšić
Local elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) were held on 15 November 2020. These were the seventh local elections since the signing of the Dayton Peace Agreement in December 1995. Only in Mostar were the elections held at a somewhat later date, on 20 December 2020, and for the first time after twelve years. These local elections were organised and took place under complex circumstances marked by the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic turmoil. Nevertheless, the elections brought major political changes, mainly in urban areas. Opposition politicians (in the period before and after the elections) emphasised that these elections are just an introduction to events and changes that will take place during the 2022 general elections. Similar views were voiced by political analysts and the media.

Local Elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina

  • Damir Kapidžić
Local elections for municipal and city councils and municipal and city mayors were held in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) on 2. October 2016. These were the sixth local elections since the Dayton Peace Agreement. There was generally not much expectation for significant change in BiH politics, and the elections were seen as a test on to what extent the major political parties are familiar with citizens’ concerns, especially at the local level. A change in the Electoral Law a few months ahead of the elections had increased the importance of party structures and party leaders in determining the allocation of seats among candidates from party lists, while decreasing the influence of voters. Coupled with an electoral system that favors small parties, this could potentially result in further fragmentation of the party system.