The Slovenia Times

Bumpy road ahead for coalition after passage of budgets


Time is running out for certain laws and in the next two months it will transpire whether the ministers have fulfilled expectations, Igor Zorčič, deputy group leader for the Modern Centre Party (SMC) said on Tuesday.

He expects the coming period will be difficult "because matters will have to be coordinated in the earliest phase since it is more than evident that some are already preparing for an election."

While refusing to comment on speculation that there is growing displeasure with the work of Foreign Minister Miro Cerar, an SMC member, Zorčič said the work of some other ministers would have to be put under the spotlight first.

"The ministers who are obligated to table certain laws, which have been pending for a while, will definitely be in the focus now," said Zorčič, who highlighted missing laws on healthcare and the defence system.

Matjaž Han, deputy group leader for the Social Democrats (SD), said the coalition "cannot be calm" in any of the coming parliamentary votes.

He expects a lot of consultations "and probably blackmail as well," but sees this as "the cost of the minority government".

One of the cabinet members currently facing pressure is Agriculture Minister Aleksandra Pivec, who is suspected at having misappropriated funds for an EU-funded project for the Chamber of Hospitality and Tourism before she took office.

Pivec said yesterday she was willing to resign and her party boss, Defence Minister Karl Erjavec, said he would let Prime Minister Marjan Šarec decide on her fate, but Šarec has so far refrained from taking action.

While the other coalition partners are leaving the decision to Šarec as well, Han said Šarec had "set the standard for survival of ministers" very high.

He was referring to Dejan Prešiček, the culture minister from the ranks of the SD, having to leave because of bullying allegations and misuse of the ministry car.

The ruling Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ) appears to be more upbeat. Deputy group leader Brane Golubović said the budget votes had shown the coalition can do its job, now it was up to the ministries to start implementing the plans.


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