Another possible opponent to Andrej Plenković drops out.
Foreign Minister and international secretary of HDZ Miro Kovač said on Monday that he would not run for party president, explaining that his candidacy would lead to polarization in the party, reports Jutarnji List on July 4, 2016.
“Given the atmosphere in the party and the general public, my candidacy would lead to polarization within HDZ. I do not want for that to happen. The interests of the party are more important than my personal ambition. I will not run for party president, and I want us to use this time to campaign within the party and to prepare for parliamentary elections”, said Kovač on Monday to journalists outside the HDZ headquarters, where the party presidency was meeting.
He emphasized that HDZ had to win the parliamentary elections and he called on his supporters to direct their enthusiasm towards that goal. “This is the most important thing and I will give it my person attention”, he said.
Asked whether he supported candidacy by MEP Andrej Plenković, Kovač responded: “I ask all my friends, all those who supported me, who encouraged me to run for this office, to focus on the parliamentary elections, because now we have to win. If there is only one candidate, this means that we will support that one candidate, and that is the most important thing.”
He rejected claims that someone had persuaded him to give up on the candidacy, adding that since his youth he was the one making all the decisions, even though he had a lot of friends with different opinions.
Members of HDZ presidency gathered on Monday at the party headquarters in preparation for interparty and parliamentary elections, and after the session of the presidency it is expected that the talks on possible election coalition with HSP AS will take place. Also, members of the party’s campaign headquarters will hold a meeting.
HDZ deputy president Milijan Brkić confirmed to reporters that he did not intend to run for party president, while Culture Minister and HDZ presidency member Zlatko Hasanbegović, who is also being mentioned as a possible candidate, said that “the time will tell” when he would run.
Candidates have until Wednesday midnight to submit at least 5,000 signatures of support from party members.