President of Iceland Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson announced in his New Year’s speech broadcast on RÚV yesterday that he will participate in the presidential election next summer and hopes to serve as Iceland’s president for a forth term.
Grímsson, Iceland’s fifth president, was first elected in 1996 with 40.8 percent of the electorate. Three other candidates took part in the presidential election that year. Grímsson was reelected in 2000 and again in 2004, ruv.is reports.
If Grímsson will be reelected again next summer he will be the third president to remain in office for 16 years, or four terms. Ásgeir Ásgeirsson and Vigdís Finnbogadóttir also served four terms.
Leader of the Left Greens, Steingrímur J. Sigfússon, has proposed limiting the time the president is permitted to remain in office to 12 years, as has been done in Finland.
Other MPs, like Minister of Education and MP for the Independence Party Thorgerdur Katrín Gunnarsdóttir, disagree and do not believe a time limit is necessary.