STRASBOURG, France — Maltese center-right MEP Roberta Metsola was elected president of the European Parliament on Tuesday.
Metsola won 458 votes in the first round of balloting. Swedish Green Alice Bah Kuhnke came second with 101 votes, while The Left’s Sira Rego of Spain was in third place with 57 votes. The fourth proposed candidate, Polish MEP Kosma Złotowski from the European Conservatives and Reformists, withdrew ahead of the vote.
“With humbleness, I feel honored by this resposnability with which you are entrusting me,” Metsola told MEPs in a speech from the president’s seat. “I promise you that I will work and do my utmost to work on behalf of this parliament and for the benefit of all EU citizens.”
Metsola had an absolute majority, avoiding the need for a second round of voting.
“Ours is an institution that is unique in the world,” Metsola told MEPs in a speech ahead of the vote. “We need to strengthen it.”
Metsola succeeds Italian social democrat David Sassoli who died last week at the age of 65, shortly before the end of his term in office. She is due to serve for the next two and a half years — the second half of the current parliamentary term.
“The next part of the mandate will see a window of opportunity to make our parliament more modern, more effective and more efficient,” Metsola said.
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