Celje – Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek is confident that the alliance Connecting Slovenia, which also includes his party Concretely, will decide what the next government will be like. He urged voters on Saturday to secure them a double-digit vote needed for that.
Addressing a pre-election event of the five-party movement in Celje, Počivalšek pledged they will negotiate with everyone after the 24 April general election but reach a deal with those who “want neither left nor right but only forward ahead”.
Slovenia is “painfully divided” on virtually every point, and Počivalšek said it was time to stop talking about what happened 70 years ago.
Bridging differences is one of the main campaign mottos of Connecting Slovenia, which combines the liberal, people’s and green groups.
“The divisions haven’t been created by people, but by politicians and it’s time for a part of the political spectrum to make a step forward,” Počivalšek described the rationale behind the movement.
They will run with 88 candidates in the election, including the leaders of the five parties making up the movement; Počivalšek plus Marjan Podobnik (People’s Party), Andrej Čuš (Greens), Franc Kangler (New People’s Party) Andrej Magajna (New Social Democracy) and the movement’s coordinator Nada Pavšer.
The leaders spoke of their joint goals such as a strong economy, including agriculture, a good welfare system for those in need of help rather than for those who cheat, a green digital transformation, and a circular economy. They declared that the era of cheap imported energy and waste exports was over.
Also standing for Connecting Slovenia will be National Council Speaker Alojz Kovšca, State Secretary at the Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy Monika Kirbiš Rojs, former Health Ministry State Secretary Tina Bregant and current Economy Ministry State Secretary Polona Rifelj.
Other prominent candidates include former handball player Roman Pungartnik, former Transport Minister Jakob Presečnik, doctor Janez Remškar, and some mayors, including Franc Čebulj from Cerklje na Gorenjskem and Janez Cimperman from Ig.
More than 400 delegates of the People’s Party (SLS) earlier gathered for a congress in Celje to adopt resolutions addressing food and energy self-sufficiency, which is seen as an acute issue in light of the war in Ukraine.