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No opposition consensus on who will take deputy-speaker posts

The two parliamentary deputy-speaker posts as well as several parliamentary committee chairmanships offered to the opposition parties by Smer following its victory in the March 10 general election remained unfilled after a meeting of the five parties on Friday, March 16, failed to reach consensus, outgoing Speaker of Parliament Pavol Hrušovský (Christian Democratic Movement (KDH)) said at a press conference.

The two parliamentary deputy-speaker posts as well as several parliamentary committee chairmanships offered to the opposition parties by Smer following its victory in the March 10 general election remained unfilled after a meeting of the five parties on Friday, March 16, failed to reach consensus, outgoing Speaker of Parliament Pavol Hrušovský (Christian Democratic Movement (KDH)) said at a press conference.

While KDH leader Ján Figeľ (KDH) is the leading candidate for one of the deputy-speaker posts, Most-Híd remained at odds with Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OĽaNO) over who should become the second of the opposition's deputy speakers. Most-Híd would like to see its leader Béla Bugár in the post; OĽaNO is yet to select a nominee.

When it comes to parliamentary committee chairmanships, the opposition was offered leadership of the economy, agriculture, human rights and foreign affairs committees. Moreover, the opposition will get to choose the head of the special parliamentary committees that supervise the activities of the SIS intelligence service, the military intelligence service and the National Security Office (NBÚ) vetting agency.

Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) leader Richard Sulík told the TASR newswire that his party wanted outgoing Economy Minister Juraj Miškov to become chair of the economy committee. The party also expressed an interest in its nominees being appointed as deputy chair of the parliamentary finance committee and to a leading post on one of the supervisory committees. Sulík said he himself wanted to sit on the agriculture committee.

Party representatives agreed that each supervisory committee – with the exception of the NBÚ committee - would have 15 members, while all other committees would have 11-13 members. Members are to be assigned proportionally, based on the election results of each party.

“I believe that all our opposition partners are aware that if we fail to agree on who the parliamentary vice-chair should be, Smer will decide for us, and I don't think that's a good solution,” Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) vice-chair Lucia Žitňanská said at a press conference after the opposition parties' Friday meeting. Their next meeting is due to take place on Tuesday (March 20).

Source: TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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