The Slovenia Times

Anniversary of First Elections in Independent Slovenia


Speaker Gregor Virant said the reputation of the National Assembly was at a critically low level. He proposes the introduction of an ethics code for MPs.

According to Virant, the reasons why the public has lost trust in the National Assembly are partly objective, in that MPs are forced to pass numerous unpopular measures in the times of crisis, and party subjective, in that hey have become embroiled in various scandals.

To prevent the latter, Virant proposes the passage of an ethics code that would have to be signed by all MPs.

It would envisage the setting up of an ethics panel which could call for resignation in case of severe violations. If the MP refused to resign, they could be recalled by a two-thirds majority of their colleagues.

Virant also proposes the introduction of a preference vote, which would give voters more influence on the election of individuals to parliament.

The speaker believes that the mutual lack of trust among MPs, which recently culminated in the checking up of MPs' signatures in support of a referendum, cast a negative light on the National Assembly.

The National Assembly should be comprised "only of mentally and emotionally intelligent, ethical, educated, cultural, independent and critical individuals", he stressed.

The president of the deputies' association, Mitja Slavinec, pointed out in his address that the association did not agree with generalisations that all politicians were corrupt.

"Individual violators must be pinpointed and condemned while all others must have their personal integrity and human dignity protected," he said.

The speaker from the 1996-2000 term, Janez Podobnik, said that the National Assembly was open for discussion, ready to listen and generating agreements. "This is the kind of National Assembly Slovenia needs."

Pavel Gantar, who was speaker in 2008-2011, meanwhile believes that the National Assembly needs purification and more of young MPs. This could be achieved with the introduction of a preference vote, he said.

The president of the National Council, the upper chamber of parliament, Blaž Kavčič, and the prime minister in the country's first government, Lojze Peterle, also attended the ceremony.


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