Presidential election on 2 April, chaos in Parliament

Maja Gojkovic, Serbia’s National Assembly speaker, “paused” all parliamentary sessions until after the presidential election takes place in April.

Gojkovic, who is a member of the ruling Serbian Progressive Party (SNS), explained her decision by saying that opposition MPs had insulted her and declined to discuss how parliamentary sessions “would work” until the elections.

At the same time, opposition groups accused Gojkovic of abusing the parliament in order to help the SNS leader, prime minister Aleksandar Vucic with running of his presidential campaign. Vucic said earlier  that his campaign would last “five days” and was reluctant to comment on whether he would resign as Prime Minister if he won at the presidential election.

Bosko Obradovic, leader of the conservative group “Dveri”, appealed to all opposition presidential nominees to unite against the regime, and to stand up for fair elections. In his words, Gojkovic’s move was “another attack against the National Assembly”. Obradovic stressed that presidential nominees are not equally represented in the big Serbian media, while voters are exposed to enormous pressure.

Democratic Party (DS) criticized Gojkovic’s decision interpreting it as misuse of parliament in favour of the elections. Marko Djurisic from the Social-Democratic Party protested over Gojkovic’s move suggesting it was an indication of the authoritarianism of the regime in Serbia.

The presidential elections in Serbia will be held on Sunday, 2nd April – B92 has received confirmation of this from the prime minister’s cabinet. Earlier, the daily Blic said that National Assembly President Maja Gojkovic would officially announce the presidential election on Thursday.

(IBNA, InSerbia, 01.03.2017)

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