Romania's Central Electoral Office decided on Monday that in Voinesti, NE Romania, where the winning candidate of local elections on Sunday died early in the polling day, his counter-candidate in the second round of elections should become mayor of the town, Romanian news channels report.

Incumbent mayor Neculai Ivascu, a Social Democrat (PSD), died on Sunday morning shortly after voting started in the second round of local elections in which he ran to renew his term. As Romanian legislation does not provide for such situation, voting continued throughout the day - and Ivascu eventually won the poll despite his death being announced publicly.

Ivascu received 1051 votes to his rival's 1028.

The Electoral Office today decided that the defeated candidate should become mayor anyway.

Niculai Ivascu had been running the town of Voinesti, Iasi county in NE Romania since 1990.

Human rights NGO the Pro Democratia Association had called for the suspension of the voting process in Voinesti, but the Central Electoral Office decided elections there should continue given that there is no provision in the Romanian legislation to cover such a situation.