Tech glitch accidentally elects two parliamentarians in Swiss canton

Tech glitch accidentally elects two parliamentarians in Swiss canton

Canton Basel-Land announced 90 newly (re-)elected district administrators on February 19, with many of the new administrators being celebrated and lauded in the local media. However, there was one problem  - two of them were not actually elected and were only declared winners due to a computer glitch. 

A Centre and EPP politician were affected

According to Swiss broadcaster SRF, a Centre (Mitte) and an EPP (Evangelical People’s Party) candidate were affected by the glitch. The pair were told they had been elected to the government of Basel-Land, only to later learn that this was not the case. 

According to the state chancellery, the election software that was used incorrectly calculated the allocation of seats between four constituencies, which gave the impression that the Centre and EPP representatives were elected. "I'm depressed and disappointed," the now unelected Centre Party’s Christian Helfenstein told SRF. "I was very happy on Sunday, now it's the complete opposite," he added. 

State chancellery has issued an apology to the candidates

"It's totally annoying," clerk Nic Kaufmann told SRF. "We apologised to the politicians concerned. We're sorry you were wrongly pleased with having been elected."  The state chancellery is now making changes so that the glitch can be corrected. According to the canton, there are four constituencies affected - Reinach, Münchenstein, Muttenz and Laufen.

Emily Proctor


Emily Proctor

Emily grew up in the UK before moving abroad to study International Relations and Chinese. She then obtained a Master's degree in International Security and gained an interest in journalism....

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