Plenković Comments on Independence Day Celebrations and New Government

Total Croatia News

HDZ president will on Monday officially become Prime Minister-Designate.

HDZ president and probable future Prime Minister Andrej Plenković on Saturday in Zagreb paid tribute to all those who died for Croatia and said that 8 October 1991 was the key day for termination of all constitutional relations between Croatia and former Yugoslavia, reports Večernji List on October 8, 2016.

“We remember those historic days, now a quarter-century later, with pride and commitment. On the eve of the inaugural session of new Parliament and formation of a new government, we are getting ready to work on goals which are now a priority for Croatian society”, said Plenković, who paid respect for all Croatian soldiers who gave their lives for freedom of Croatia.

Asked if he agreed with the idea of HDZ elder statesman and former Speaker of Parliament Vladimir Šeks that Croatia should have one main holiday which would mark its sovereignty, statehood and independence, and suggested that it might be 30 May which would be decided by citizens in a referendum, Plenković said that this was a topic that deserved serious and thorough discussion. His message was that the debate would include everybody, “when and if the time for it comes”, adding that at the moment they respect all the holidays which legally exist in the country.

30 May was the main national holiday celebrated as the Statehood Day during the 1990s, but it was then moved to 25 June when SDP took power in the early 2000s. On 30 May 1990, the first meeting of the first multiparty Parliament took place.

Asked whether as the future Prime Minister he would have a veto power on MOST’s proposals for ministers, Plenković said that, after he receives the official mandate from President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović to form a government, we would meet and talk with all potential candidates and then make necessary decisions.

Regarding the programme of the future government, he said that expert groups from HDZ and MOST were currently working on it, adding that they have already prepared a draft which would be finalized next week. Finally, asked whether Ivan Tepeš (HSP AS) would become a Member of the European Parliament as a replacement for Davor Ivo Stier (HDZ), who is rumoured to be one of future ministers, Plenković said that the issue would be discussed when the time comes, since first he had to see who will be members of his government, and only then can other issues be solved.

Tepeš from rightwing HSP AS was Deputy Speaker of Parliament during the last eight months. His party was in a coalition with HDZ for elections to the European Parliament in 2014, and he is next in line to replace Stier if he becomes a member of government, which would automatically mean that he would have to leave the European Parliament.


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