Slovak parliament does not choose General Prosecutor as coalition seeks recorded vote

Slovakia’s parliament did not elect the country’s next general prosecutor on Tuesday, December 7 as MPs from the governing coalition parties did not hand over their ballots and thus neither of the two candidates received the majority necessary to be elected as general prosecutor, the SITA newswire reported.

Slovakia’s parliament did not elect the country’s next general prosecutor on Tuesday, December 7 as MPs from the governing coalition parties did not hand over their ballots and thus neither of the two candidates received the majority necessary to be elected as general prosecutor, the SITA newswire reported.

Of 150 MPs who received blank ballots (no MPs were absent during the vote), the current General Prosecutor Dobroslav Trnka received 71 votes and Jozef Čentéš, the joint candidate of the governing parties did not receive any votes as 79 MPs failed to deposit their ballots.

This was the fourth time that Slovakia’s parliament has failed to elect the general prosecutor in a secret ballot. During the third voting, some of the ruling coalition’s MPs had also voted for Trnka and thus the four parties of the ruling coalition have agreed to seek a change in the law and make the selection a recorded vote rather than a secret ballot.

The coalition will prepare an amendment to the Parliamentary Act and present it next year. A new, recorded vote on the general prosecutor is expected after the amendment is passed, in April or May 2011. The current opposition rejects the idea of a public vote on this issue.

The third secret ballot in parliament on December 2 is in the hands of police investigators.

"Based on information from the media on the procedure [used] in the prosecutor general
election the police are checking whether crimes of corruption were committed," Andrea Dobiášová, the spokeswoman for the Police Corps Presidium, told SITA.

Some MPs from the ruling Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) party told the Sme daily that somebody had unsuccessfully attempted to bribe one of its party deputies. Jozef Kollár, the head of the SaS deputy caucus stated on public-service Slovak Television on December 5 that coalition deputies who failed to support the ruling coalition's joint candidate Čentéš had been either bribed, or were extorted or are easy to extort, or had decided to topple the government of Iveta Radičová.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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