NEWS BRIEFS

ANO deputy speaker hinges on majority

THE NEW Citizen's Alliance (ANO) would like to propose a candidate for deputy speaker of the Slovak parliament, but only if they get an assurance that its candidate is likely to earn majority approval.

ANO has previously proposed several candidates for a new deputy speaker. Each time it has failed to muster sufficient parliamentary support.

According to Slovak rules, the parliament can have up to four deputy speakers. Based on a coalition agreement signed after elections, ANO has the right to a deputy speaker post.

For the past year, the parliament has had only two deputy speakers. The vacancies arose when Pavol Rusko and Zuzana Martináková left their deputy speaker posts to take up other opportunities. Rusko left to become Economy Minister, while Martináková left to become Chairman of the Free Forum after she deserted the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union.

"If we are not satisfied that we can get the necessary support for our candidate [for deputy speaker], then we will resign ourselves to not raising the issue in parliament," said Pavol Rusko, party boss of ANO, according to the daily Pravda.

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