Stevo Culej (HDZ) offended Veljko Kajtazi, an MP representing Roma national minority.
HDZ president Andrej Plenković apologized to Veljko Kajtazi, a representative of Roma national minority in Parliament, for incident caused by HDZ’s MP and candidate for Parliament Stevo Culej, reports Index.hr on August 24, 2016.
Culej published a post on Kajtazi’s Facebook page: “Dear members of the Roma community. Do not trust this former Yugoslav National Army officer, he is lying like a Serbian gypsy and he is not part of you, the Roma in Croatia. He lies and works on behalf of those who hate Croats, which is not your programme.” The Ethics Committee announced that the post represented a serious violation of the electoral ethics code.
“I would like to personally express my deep sorrow for this post. I apologize to Mr. Kajtazi if he was offended in any way. This is not a position of HDZ or me personally”, said Plenković, who added that as HDZ president he talked with Culej at the parliament. “I want to reiterate that I personally, and our party, care about respect for rights of national minorities. I said that such behaviour was unacceptable and that I will tolerate such comments on Facebook, which is a specific form of communication. I told Mr. Culej that it is not to be repeated”, said Plenković.
He expressed his readiness to cooperate with all the national minorities in Croatia, in particular with the Roma minority, and announced that the HDZ government would continue with the process of integration of the Roma into Croatian society.
Speaking about the forthcoming elections, particularly in the sixth parliamentary constituency, Plenković said that the sixth constituency, together with the second and the ninth, would be key for the overall outcome of parliamentary elections on 11 September. “I want us to achieve a better result in this constituency than at the last elections”, said Plenković.
HDZ’s list contains nine candidates who were previously members of parliament, ministers or deputy ministers, so they could fill half the government if needed, said the HDZ president. He stressed that the priorities of HDZ in the constituency were the reindustrialization of Sisak-Moslavina County and continued operation of the ironworks in Sisak and Petrokemija in Kutina. Velika Gorica is already one of the most developed towns in Croatia and Plenković expects that the new airport terminal will give it further impetus.