VLADIMÍR Mečiar, current head of the opposition Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS), will almost certainly run for party leader again, according to senior HZDS members.
HZDS deputy chairman Ján Kovarčík told media on March 2 that he was convinced that Mečiar would run for the post at the upcoming June party summit, although Mečiar himself did not confirm the information.
After a group of 11 rebels led by former HZDS deputy chairman Vojtech Tkáč left the party, criticising Mečiar's authoritarian practices, some pundits speculated that Mečiar, the only HZDS chairman in the party's 10-year history, would not run for the top post again.
Several regional branches have elected new heads to fill posts left vacant by the rebels. Among the new regional leaders are Mečiar loyalists such as former HZDS MP Ján Cuper, elected head of the Bratislava HZDS branch; Tibor Mikuš, head of the Trnava region; and Džupa, voted to lead the Košice regional party branch.
10. Mar 2003 at 0:00 | From press reports of TASR and SITA