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BREAKING NEWS

Anti-corruption campaigner on course for surprise win in Slovakia's presidential election

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Anti-corruption campaigner on course for surprise win in Slovakia's presidential election
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REUTERS/David W Cerny
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Her name is Zuzana Caputova and she's never held public office.

But the pro-European lawyer and anti-corruption campaigner is expected to win Slovakia's presidential election on Saturday.

Polls show the ruling Smer party-backed candidate, EU commissioner Maros Sefcovic, is trailing far behind Caputova.

The voters have had enough of the Smer party and just last year mass protests broke out after a journalist was assassinated.

She now has the backing of the protest movement and recent polls indicate she could gain more than 50 percent of the vote.

Although the role of the president is largely ceremonial, Caputova's election would be a clear message from Slovakians that they reject the nationalist politics that have dominated neighbouring Poland and Hungary.

The killing of Jan Kuciak, who reported on fraud cases involving politically connected businessmen, triggered the biggest anti-government protests in Slovakia since communism.

And it also led to the resignation of the then prime minister Robert Fico who was also leader of ther Smer party.