COALITION members are speculating how many votes they can count on in parliament now that the New Citizen’s Alliance (ANO) is divided over the dismissal of party boss Pavol Rusko as the Economy Minister, the daily SME wrote.
Preliminary figures suggest that of 11 ANO MPs, only three support Rusko. The remaining eight have pledged loyalty to the ruling coalition. Theoretically, the government could still function with reduced support by continuing to rely on votes from independent MPs.
Everything will be clearer when the parliament meets for its next session September 12.
On Saturday, August 27, the ANO will meet to discuss its future.
Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda has yet to react officially to Rusko’s demand that the ruling coalition withdraw the ANO ministers of culture and health, František Tóth and Rudolf Zajac, respectively.
Zajac and Tóth both sided with Rusko’s opponents in an affair that led to his dismissal from the Economy Ministry. Unofficially, the PM suggested that he would not recall the ministers.
Based on a coalition agreement signed by all ruling parties before the start of their term, the ANO has the right to decide which ANO members head the Culture and Health Ministries.
According to the chairman of the ruling Hungarian Coalition Party (SMK), Bela Bugár, Dzurinda should wait to make a decision until Rusko’s influence over ANO members in parliament becomes clear. If only three of four ANO members choose to support Rusko, then the former economy minister will not be in a position to demand the replacement of the ministers.
Compiled by Martina Juranová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
26. Aug 2005 at 8:32