At the coalition council meeting on November 19, Prime Minister Robert Fico allegedly demanded the resignation of Agriculture Minister Miroslav Jureňa, an HZDS nominee.
The HZDS strongly rejected this request, and called for the entire management of the Slovak Land Fund (SPF) to be sacked. Fico dismissed that request.
For that reason, the meeting of the ruling coalition partners was interrupted. A date for the next meeting has not yet been set.
The dispute between the ruling coalition partners involves questionable land deals at the SPF, which is under the Agriculture Ministry’s jurisdiction. The SPF’s vice-chair, Branislav Bríza, has already resigned as a result of the scandal.
After the coalition council session, Jureňa was asked to explain what was discussed and where the PM stood on his job. Jureňa declined to answer whether Fico demanded his resignation, but he said that the HZDS did not want to sack him.
He also declined to answer whether the coalition would collapse because of him, but he said that if Fico keeps insisting on his firing, the situation could lead to a coalition crisis.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
20. Nov 2007 at 15:08