DOBROSLAV Trnka, whose term as the country’s general prosecutor elapsed on February 2, has failed to get re-elected to the post in a secret ballot on May 17. Trnka won the support of 70 deputies of the 150 present deputies; 17 voted against him; 29 deputies abstained from the voting and there were 34 invalid votes, according to SITA newswire.
The results of the vote also mean that Iveta Radičová remains in the prime ministerial position. Radičová expressed strong opposition to Trnka’s eventual reselection, even going so far as to promise that she would resign if it were to happen.
The ruling coalition has since gone to considerable lengths to turn the previously secret ballot used to select the general prosecutor into a public vote. But the Constitutional Court, in a decision published on April 20, in response to a case brought by Trnka himself, ruled that his constitutional rights had been violated during two of the parliamentary votes last year.
According to the court, the violation happened when deputies revealed how they had voted in the secret ballot, by photographing their ballots or openly declaring who they had supported. By doing so, the deputies violated the basic principles of the secret ballot and thus Trnka’s rights, the court found. This is why the deputies held another secret ballot.
Meanwhile, the expected candidate from the ruling coalition Jozef Čentéš announced on May 13 that he would not be running in the repeat secret vote scheduled for May 17.
Čentéš explained his action by saying that the vote had become linked to allegations of MPs being blackmailed and bribed so he does not want to be part of it any more. He rejected the notion that someone had influenced his decision.
17. May 2011 at 7:30 | Compiled by Spectator staff