Sinisa Mali set to become deputy PM

The outgoing mayor of Belgrade, Sinisa Mali is one of the candidates for the new minister in charge of investments, according to the Blic daily.

Earlier this year, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, who was the prime minister at the time, announced that Mali would resign from his current post. Since then, the officials have been giving different statements on his possible next appointment.

Belgrade’s mayor has been under relentless public pressure to resign following the illegal overnight demolishing of the buildings in Belgrade’s quarter of Savamala in April 2014. Although, Vucic claimed that Mali was responsible for the action, he did take him his protection.

At the same time, the mayor was in the centre of the scandal with his allegedly plagiarized doctorate.

Earlier this week, the Danas daily reported that Mali would become the head of the cabinet of the newly appointed Prime Minister Ana Brnabic. According to Danas’s sources, Mali would be “the real authority” in the government. But the Blic daily suggests that Mali “most probably” would not “control” Brnabic.

Mali did not confirm nor rebuff the Danas report calling it “a speculation”, and added that Ana Brnabic would pick the head of her cabinet herself.

After months of uncertainty, Vucic decided last week to appoint Brnabic as his successor. Analysts say that the power would remain in Vucic’s hands despite the ceremonial nature of the presidential post. But Vucic also remains the leader of the ruling Serbian Progressive Party (SNS).

Unlike his predecessor Tomislav Nikolic, who resigned from the SNS leader post back in 2012 after he was elected state president, Vucic decided to keep control of the party. Speaking in a TV show on Tuesday evening, Vucic said that he “could not forgive” himself because he did not succeed in “defending” Mali. Vucic said Mali was “decisively the best Belgrade mayor in the last 30 years”.

(IBNA, 21.06.2017)



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