Janša impeachment motion in parliament on Wednesday

Photo: STA

Ljubljana – After last week’s blockade of a plenary session, parliament was back to business on Monday as the college of deputy group leaders set this week’s agenda. MPs will set a referendum date on Tuesday, the impeachment motion against PM Janez Janša is scheduled for Wednesday and a motion to dismiss Speaker Igor Zorčič might be debated on Friday.

The first emergency session starts on Tuesday for MPs to set a date – expectedly 4 July – for a referendum on the changes to the waters law passed at the end of March.

At the same session, MPs could also vote on the appointment of Marko Ilešič as Slovenia’s candidate for a judge on the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.

On Wednesday, the other emergency session, to last until Friday, will open to debate practically the same bills that were scheduled for the May plenary last week.

One of the items bound to attract a lot of attention is the impeachment motion against Janša, mounted by the four centre-left opposition parties.

MPs will first vote on whether to ask President Borut Pahor to provide his view on the motion. If the proposal is defeated, the session will proceed with the impeachment motion.

Danijel Krivec, the deputy group leader of the ruling Democrats (SDS), and his opposition SocDem counterpart Matjaž Han, expect the Pahor motion to be defeated.

“The president has no business expressing his view on what is a matter of parliamentary procedure. I don’t expect him to provide his view,” said Krivec.

Han also believes that the proposal to dismiss Janša, which requires a majority of all MP, or 46, is unlikely to succeed.

Other appointment and dismissal motions were also added to this session, but it is not yet clear whether the coalition will propose dismissing Zorčič, after he left the coalition Modern Centre Party (SMC) to become unaffiliated at the end of March.

Krivec said the coalition agreed in principle to put the motion to vote, but would wait until Friday. “We’re being cautious because your’re constantly reminding us that counting is needed,” he said in reference to the coalition not having a clear majority.

To dismiss Zorčič, at least 46 votes must be secured in a secret ballot, while the first attempt to replace him proved one vote short.

Asked by the press whether tensions calmed down after the opposition voted against the May plenary’s agenda last Monday, preventing it to proceed, Krivec said “the weekend has done the trick and some have reflected upon their actions”.