The Slovak Parliament passed the Patriotism Act on March 2 with the legislation set to come into effect as of April 2010, the TASR newswire reported. A total of 77 MPs out of 122 voted in favour of the proposal.
If signed by Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič, the Slovak national anthem will be played at the beginning of every session of the government, in national and regional parliaments, as well as at public village events. The anthem will also be played at schools at the beginning of every school week and on the programming of state-owned media.
School curricula will include the patriotic education, with public schools required to place a national emblem, flag, the text of the anthem and preamble of the Slovak Constitution at every classroom. These items will also need to be present at every place where sessions of local parliaments and regional parliaments are held.
According to the original proposal, people were to swear an oath of allegiance to the Slovak Republic when receiving their first identity cards. The same was expected of MPs, mayors and governors when receiving their decrees. However, Rafael Rafaj (SNS) who had drawn up the proposal made concessions in the final approved legislation and only state employees will be required to swear allegiance to the state. TASR
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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3. Mar 2010 at 14:00