The Malta Independent 13 June 2024, Thursday
View E-Paper

EP election: Sixth and eighth districts register largest drop in turnout compared to 2019

Albert Galea Sunday, 9 June 2024, 09:08 Last update: about 4 days ago

The sixth and eighth districts registered the largest drops in turnout when compared to the 2019 European Parliament election.

From having the highest district turnout in 2019 at 75.62%, the sixth district – which is made up of Qormi, Siggiewi, Luqa, and part of Zebbug – registered a 6.55 percentage point decrease this year.

Likewise, the eighth district – made up of Birkirkara, Balzan, Iklin and Lija – saw a decrease from 71.99% in 2019 to 65.8% this year; a decrease of 6.19 percentage points.

Perhaps it is indicative that out of those localities, Birkirkara saw the biggest decrease in its local council turnout.  The turnout in the locality decreased by a mammoth 12.12 percentage points when compared to the local council elections in 2019, which were also held in tandem with the EP elections.

The district with the highest turnout meanwhile was the thirteenth – which is Gozo – as 73.95% of the electorate over there went out to vote.  This is only 0.92 percentage points less than in 2019.

The tenth – Gzira, Pembroke, St Julian’s, Sliema and part of Naxxar – together with the twelfth – Mellieha, St Paul’s Bay and part of Naxxar – districts registered the lowest turnouts, with 56.33% and 58.32% respectively.

This is in line with patterns from previous elections, where these districts tend to be the ones with the lowest turnouts.

A decrease in turnout was registered in all districts, but the traditionally Labour Party-leaning districts registered the most significant decreases.

This being said, the overall turnout registered was pretty much identical to the turnout in 2019: this year the turnout stood at 72.82%, while in 2019 it stood at 72.7%.

This is likely because of the fact that the number of early voters in this year’s election was far higher than in 2019.  Early voters are not split by districts and therefore are not included in the tallies presented by the Electoral Commission after voting day on Saturday.

In 2019, 6,168 people voted a week before the election (out of 7,383 registered to do so), while this year 14,041 people voted a week before the election (out of 15,979 registered to do so).

The fact that Friday 7 June – the day before the election – was a public holiday, hence creating a long weekend, will have prompted more people to go abroad, and therefore more people to apply to vote early.

These voters are not taken into account in the district tallies, so their demographic identity remains something of a question mark.

  • don't miss