The Slovenia Times

New Slovenia - Christian Democrats With New "Old" leadership



The SDS loomed large in the speeches of delegates as well as Hojs and Novak, the latter criticising its erstwhile partner for attempting to "degrade our programme to prevent the Christian democrats from making headway."

She emphasised in the run-up to the vote that the NSi was willing to work with parties left and right which are working for the good of the country but would "not support malice", regardless of which side of the political spectrum it comes from.

Hojs, meanwhile, criticised the party for failing to adopt a firm stance on the imprisonment of SDS leader Janez Janša, noting that "justice should be front and centre for a party with Christian roots."

Touching on criticism that the party needed to liberate itself from like-minded parties, Hojs said the NSi should not look for enemies outside its ranks.

"It is not about being liberated from other parties, it is about being better," said the former defence minister, who centred his campaign on the party being "firm and brave" in its positions.

In her acceptance speech, Novak said the party ought to "leave mistakes behind and move forward". In a nod to her opponent, she said she "took note of critics' opinion that we have made some mistakes."

The NSi has an opportunity not only to grow as a party but also to strengthen Christian democracy, according to Novak.

The party election has been closely watched, seen by pundits as a clear indication of its future as either an independent force or perennial also-ran to the SDS.

Novak stood for an independent path, having worked for several years now to establish the NSi's profile, distinct from the policies pursued by the SDS.

While there had been talk about a potential split in the party - which all key players have vehemently denied - unity appears to have been secured.

"I've said I would not leave the party today. I'll get some rest tomorrow and I will not form a new party on Monday," Hojs said.

He described the result as "good" and voiced the expectation that things which he and other critics have been pointing to would be tackled.

Deputy group leader Matej Tonin, seen as the most likely person to succeed Novak, described the vote as an indication that the party's focus on the future is correct.

"People have clearly said they support Novak. I supported her as well," he said.


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