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January 11, 2018 7:00 am | FILED UNDER: politics

PM Babis Lashes Out at Critics Focused on Capi Hnizdo Subsidy Fraud Case

By ČTK andrej babis

Prague, (CTK) – The lower house of Czech parliament is playing political games, while ANO’s minority government wants to work for the benefit of the people, Prime Minister Andrej Babis (ANO) said shortly before he would ask the lower house to support his government today.

 

A government cannot rule the country for a long time without winning a confidence vote in the lower house. None of the eight other parties in the house is ready to support or tolerate ANO’s cabinet. Their leaders mostly said Babis did not even try to negotiate with them about the forming of a majority government because he wished to rule the country by himself. They also said Babis is facing criminal prosecution.

 

“We want to talk about the programme,” Babis said, dismissing this criticism and referring to the fresh final version of the government’s policy statement.

 

Babis again said the confidence vote had nothing in common with a vote on his possible release for prosecution over a suspected EU subsidy fraud.

 

He repeatedly said he plans to introduce higher old-age pensions and free rail transport fares for students and people aged over 65.

 

An average monthly pension should be 15,000 crowns at the end of the four-year rule of his government, which is 2,500 crowns more than now, he said, adding that a pension reform would be the government’s priority.

 

President Milos Zeman said he would appoint Babis prime minister-designate again if the current minority cabinet fails to win support from parliament, which seems likely to happen.

 

If his current cabinet failed to win the confidence vote, Babis said he would wait whether the other parties changed their stance on cooperating with him. In this respect, he mentioned the election congresses of the Civic Democrats (ODS) and the Social Democrats (CSSD) that will be held this weekend and next month, respectively.

 

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