Will the non-partisan Prime Minister become more like a party politician?
The recent meeting of Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković and primary school students at the St. Mark’s Square in Zagreb seems to be just one in a series of meetings which the prime minister will have with citizens, and not only in Zagreb. The Prime Minister will soon start touring Croatia and directly communicate with citizens. Unlike President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, who has a habit of officially “moving” her office to various Croatian cities, the Prime Minister wants a much more informal contact with the citizens, reports Novi List on March 18, 2016.
There are some who claim that this is a consequence of rumours about possible early parliamentary elections, so the prime minister’s tour could be seen as a sign that he wants to remain politically active in Croatia for a long term. Although he is new to Croatia’s political scene, the Prime Minister is well aware of what is happening.
The two largest parties that make up the ruling majority have different reactions to the Prime Minister’s plans to embark on a tour of Croatia. Sources from HDZ say they hope that this is not a reaction to speculations about new elections. “There will be no new elections. Besides, there is no Prime Minister Orešković without the parliamentary majority and he certainly knows that. HDZ does not plan for early parliamentary elections”, says one HDZ member who claims that the situation with the dismissal of Dragan Lozančić as director of the Security Intelligence Agency and the selection of the new Veterans Affairs Minister is only an indication that it is not easy to work in a coalition government.
Sources from MOST also do not believe in new elections but argue that they are ready for them if HDZ decides to provoke them. “In that case, they would be bringing down their own prime minister and the government which they supported in Parliament. MOST is fully behind the Prime Minister, he is just the kind of man we wanted when we were looking for a non-partisan and professional prime minister. The dismissal of this government would not automatically mean new elections, but if they were to occur, and if Orešković would want to get involved, such a man would always be welcome in our ranks”, says a source from MOST.