The former leader of the extreme right-wing organisation Slovenská Pospolitosť, Marián Kotleba, has reportedly been a member of Matica Slovenská's local branch in Púchov since August, the internet website www.aktualne.sk reported.
The branch is headed by Marián Mišún, who ran (unsuccessfully) in the June 12 parliamentary election on the slate of Kotleba's nationalistic Folks Party Our Slovakia (ĽS-NS).
"Symbolically, we have launched the transformation of Matica Slovenská into a modern and dynamic organisation, defending the rights and interest of the Slovak nation in real life and not only on paper," reads the ĽS-NS website. The party also calls on its adherents to found local Matica Slovenská organisations – under Mišún's direction – all across Slovakia.
Matica Chairman Jozef Markuš said, as quoted by the TASR newswire, that he wasn't aware of Kotleba's membership. He conceded that there have been long-term problems with the Púchov branch of the organisation, and said that he will consider taking steps against its chairman.
"There is a possibility to shut down the entire local branch, if necessary. And we can also dismiss an individual for a serious violation of our statutes," Markuš told www.aktualne.sk. According to the website, the Matica Slovenská leadership views the Púchov branch in a negative light, and has even pressed charges against Mišún over abusing the organisation's name for propagating racial intolerance.
Sources: aktualne.sk, TASR
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
7. Sep 2010 at 14:00