NEWS IN SHORT

No agreement on MPs’ immunity

THE OPPOSITION Smer party will not support the amendment to limit immunity enjoyed by members of Slovakia’s parliament in the manner proposed by the government through a constitutional law, the leader of the party, Robert Fico, said on October 6.

THE OPPOSITION Smer party will not support the amendment to limit immunity enjoyed by members of Slovakia’s parliament in the manner proposed by the government through a constitutional law, the leader of the party, Robert Fico, said on October 6.

Fico and Prime Minister Iveta Radičová were scheduled to meet on October 6 to discuss a common coalition-opposition approach to limiting MPs’ immunity but Fico did not attend the meeting because he said Radičová had informed the media about it, claiming that there was an agreement to hold a private meeting without the presence of media.

Fico claimed that Radičová wanted to use this joint discussion about limiting MPs’ immunity to cover what he called emerging scandals within her government and said Smer refuses to assist her in this game, the SITA newswire wrote.

“There was no agreement that we wouldn’t inform about the meeting,” Radičová responded, adding that she and Fico only agreed that they would not provide information about the results of the meeting to the media.

“But since there’ll be no meeting, there’ll be no results,” the prime minister said, as quoted by SITA.

Fico stated that the Government Office should not have informed the media that the meeting would be held.

“I’m sorry about the way the Government Office and the prime minister proceeded; she doesn’t fulfil elementary agreements,” Fico said, as quoted by SITA.

Radičová stated that the governing coalition will now propose to limit MPs’ immunity from prosecution for non-criminal offences because this can be dealt with by passing a regular law. Changing MPs’ immunity from criminal prosecution can be accomplished only by passing a constitutional law which requires a two-thirds majority in the parliament. The governing coalition, with 79 seats in parliament, would need support from Smer to pass a constitutional law.


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