Vojtěch Filip KSCM

Petr Dubinsky

Vojtěch Filip To Step Down As Head Of KSCM Party After 16 Years

Regardless of the result of the October elections, the KSČM is waiting for a change, after sixteen years its chairman Vojtěch Filip will end in its leadership, his predecessor Miroslav Grebeníček will not defend the mandate, the chairman of the parliamentary club Pavel Kováčik did not get the candidate. Filip confirmed his intention not to run at the extraordinary congress to his fellow parties at Friday’s meeting of the executive committee, Petr Šimůnek, the first deputy chairman of the Communists, said. In an interview with Blesk, Filip stated that he had made a firm decision and promised his family that he would end up in the leadership of the KSČM in November. In recent months, Filip has faced criticism from part of the party and an attempt to appeal.

Filip wants to lead the communists to the elections, according to him they should not fall below the result from 2017. At that time, the KSČM won 7.76 percent, with the gain of 15 seats it turned out the worst in its post-November history. Now the election models attribute about five percent to the Communists, the threshold necessary to enter the House. Filip goes to the polls from the second position in the South Bohemian region.

Nominations for the position of party chairman are now being discussed by district conferences. “The most serious candidate for the chairwoman is probably (MEP) Kateřina Konečná, of course, there will be more candidates. District conferences are currently underway, which have the opportunity to assess other candidates,” said Šimůnek. He estimated that there could be ten.

The one-day congress on October 23 has only the choice of management on the program, it will take place in the Prague Top Hotel. The regular congress was supposed to meet in November, the Communists are now considering postponing it to mid-May next year. This will be decided by the broader leadership on September 18.

At the request of a third of the districts in mid-April in Nymburk, the Central Committee decided on the departure of Filip, who has been leading the party since October 1, 2005. Although most of the delegates present were in favor of his dismissal, two-thirds of all members of the party’s central committee were not required. The vice-chairmen of the KSČM were not removed either. Konečná resigned from the position of Vice-Chairwoman at that time. The Central Committee of the KSČM has 90 members, 78 of whom came to Nymburk. 60 votes are required to remove the chairman. 46 delegates voted for Filip’s appeal. Philip then described his mandate as strong enough. He added that he would make his position available at the congress after the elections.

After the 2017 elections, Filip defended cooperation with the government movement YES. The tolerance agreement, supported by the minority cabinet, was terminated by the communists earlier this year.