Romania’s suspended centre-right President Triane Basescu’s political future was finely balanced on Sunday as the country held a referendum over whether to remove him from office.
More than half of Romania’s electorate must vote for the impeachment to be valid.
Prime Minister Victor Ponta’s leftist government pushed to unseat Basescu earlier this month, accusing the former sea captain of overstepping his constitutional powers.
While opinion polls suggest the majority of Romanians would like to see Basescu removed from office, the result looked set to go down to the wire.
Ponta’s government could struggle to achieve the required 50 percent plus one turnout with many voters on holiday and Basecu calling on supporters to boycott the ballot.
“I can no longer put up with the country’s misery, education is at rock bottom, they’ve cut pay and pensions, without taking economic measures… and it’s not the rule of law, it’s a style that’s pure bolshevism,” said one man in Bucharest.
“I voted for a Romania whose politicians take care of the prosperity of the country and of its people, not of their own pockets,” said another.
The first results of Romania’s impeachment referendum are expected late on Sunday evening.