President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson has announced today that he will seek a fifth term as the President of Iceland in the 2012 presidential election, due to take place in June. The president said he was responding to a petition signed by more than 30 thousand people, urging him to run again.
In his nationally televised New Year’s address on January 1st, he said that he might be of greater assistance free of the restraints which the office of the Presidency imposes. “Without the duties of a head of state on my shoulders, I shall have more scope to devote energy to cherished goals and causes that have long been dear to me; I shall be able to make a contribution of a different kind towards progress and prosperity, science, research and economic activity,” Grímsson said. He did however, not state that he would be stepping down.
Grímsson was first elected president in 1996 with 41.4% of the votes, running against three other candidates. There was no challenger in 2000 so he was automatically re-elected. In 2004 he was re-elected with 67.5 percent of the votes. He was again the only candidate in 2008.
photo by Kris Krüg