First round underway, polls predict victory for Emmanuel Macron’s party

Paris: French voters on Sunday headed to polling stations for the first round of the nation’s legislative elections, a month after electing political outsider Emmanuel Macron as the President.

Some 67,000 voting centres opened across the country at 8 am (local time) and will close at 8 pm, in larger cities. Voting will end two hours later in other areas, reports Efe news.

Overseas French territories voted on Saturday while French citizens living abroad cast their ballots last week.

French President-elect Emmanuel Macron. AP

French President Emmanuel Macron. AP

Some 47.5 million eligible voters are eligible to cast their ballots to elect 577 lawmakers to the lower house of Parliament or the National Assembly.

Polls pointed to President Macron’s Republic on the Move party securing a majority of between 397-427 seats, and the Republicans were expected to come second with seats between 95-115.

Meanwhile, the Socialist Party, according to projections, was expected to take less than 40 seats, while the far-right National Front led by Marine Le Pen and left-wing France Unbowed looked toward an uncertain outcome.

The government has deployed some 50,000 police and security personnel.

The second and final round will be held on 18 June.