Presidential candidates on Friday made their final statements to their supporters in the final run up to the first round of the 2023 presidential elections.

In the morning, chief returning officer Costas Constantinou said everything was ready for the elections during a press conference in Nicosia, where he presented all the details related to the running of the elections.

Each of the candidates later issued their final messages as electioneering is banned after midnight on Friday.

In his message, ruling Disy candidate Averof Neophytou said he was reaching out to ask for support and trust from voters with the promise that he would fight “with all my strength”. “Your anxieties, your hopes, your dreams, are mine too,” he said.

“We can keep the economy strong. We can support the family and the middle class with a significant tax break and to face the threat of immigration. But above all, let’s do everything to break the deadlock in the Cyprus issue. I know this all adds up to a difficult mission. But I am convinced that with your support we can and will succeed.”

Main opposition, Akel-backed Andreas Mavroyiannis said he wanted to send a message of hope for a better Cyprus.

“All of us together will be responsible for the governance of this country for the next five years… five years that will change our country and make it better,” he said.

The unifying force, he added is a “common vision for the country” and the joint well for a liberated, reunited and peaceful Cyprus.

Party-backed independent candidate Nikos Christodoulides said in his message: “I consciously choose to admit that nowadays, when you decide to accept such a challenge, you know you have no other choice but to put yourself to work, body and soul, that decisions will not always be easy, and that the costs can be big.”

Messages of support from political parties soon followed, with Diko leader Nicolas Papadopoulos calling for unity. Diko is one of the parties backing Christodoulides.

“The challenges, but also the opportunities, for our country, are many and complex,” he said. “Now is the time for unity and collectiveness, now is the time for a governance of broad social acceptance, as society demands and as Cyprus needs,” Papadopoulos added.

“So, I invite all voters and supporters of Diko, but also the entire Cypriot people, to go to the polls and choose unity and collectiveness”.

By voting for Christodoulides, he said, “we give hope and perspective, for a free, prosperous, democratic Cyprus. For a modern and European Cyprus”.

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos also published a statement of support for Christodoulides, saying that the upcoming elections will define the future of the country and its people, particularly the younger generation.

“With our vote, we can define [our future], reawaken hope and perspective,” he said.

“The results of the first Sunday is of huge political significance, and could define to a large degree who will become the new president.

“We do not gift or lend any votes,” he said. “We are voting for Nikos Christodoulides”.

Averof Neophytou, Nikos Christodoulides, Andreas Mavroyiannis want a solution based on a bizonal-bicommunal federation and the continuation of the Anastasiades policy, independent candidate George Colocassides said in his own statement.

“We are fighting for liberation and human rights,” he said. “On Sunday, I call on you to put our country above the parties and vote with our conscience,” he concluded.

One of the other independent candidates, Achilleas Demetriades called on the public to vote with their “heart and conscience”.

“We have to put this country back together. We want a Cyprus that is green, green and united, a Cyprus that is for all Cypriots and which will not have dividing lines,” he said.