Minister of Labour Ľudovít Kaník accused the Confederation of Trade Unions (KOZ) of openly becoming an ally and political partner of the opposition party Smer by planning a petition for the referendum on early parliamentary elections, news wire SITA reported.
Kaník sees the structures of Smer and KOZ as intertwined. However, the unions have denied becoming part of Smer structures and argued that the opposition party decided to support actions of the union.
The minister feels that an alliance between unions and the opposition could seriously damage relationships within the tripartite, consisting of representatives of the government, trade unions, and employers.
Smer boss, Robert Fico says the cooperation is normal and only reflects the working principles of democracy.
According to Kaník, activities of trade unions have been rather populist and aimed only at raising social tension.
KOZ announced on October 7 its plans to launch a petition for a referendum on early elections. Fico declared that supporting the petition was among the priorities of his party.
Compiled by Martina Pisárová from press reports
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21. Oct 2003 at 13:44