Will Croatia’s New PM Designate Have a Say in Creating the Government?

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PM designate’s absence from negotiations regarding new Government is raising more than a few questions

While MOST and HDZ continue their negotiations on January 5, 2016, one thing is very noticeable and that is the absence of Croatia’s new PM Designate Tihomir Tim Orešković. He was not present during yesterday’s negotiations where two parties were discussing future Ministries and did not join the meeting of MOST’s National council or HDZ’s separate meeting today.

So while two parties are, as one member of MOST said, playing ping pong bouncing ideas of each other to see which one sticks, future Prime Minister is supposedly going to join in once the negotiations are over so he can give his blessing before new Ministers are appointed. This raises a very important question, and that is, how independent is Tihomir Orešokvić and will he really have any say in who will head the Ministries or is he expecting the two parties to act like HR managers and just come up with most suitable candidates, create a PPT presentation and reserve a conference room. Given his corporate background, that would not be very surprising, but it is very much in contrast to what he was saying during his recent inteviews.

Both Tomislav Karamarko and Božo Petrov were asked yesterday why Orešković didn’t attend the meeting and after both gave very broad answers, Petrov added that the PM Designate was aware of the meeting and was invited but he had previously arranged engagements.

One would have to wonder what kind of previous engagements could prevent the future Prime Minister to attend the meeting during which the future of his entire Government is being discussed, and it does add more speculation to his already shaky status in terms of authority. By excluding Orešković from the meeting, Petrov and Karamarko are sending a very clear message that they expect Orešković to follow their instructions and to accept whoever they decide to appoint. So how can we expect Orešković to be independent and authoritative when it comes to cuts, reforms or any extraordinary event?

This question was raised during last night’s edition of Otvoreno, political show on Croatian Television. While representative of HDZ Domagoj Ivan Milošević stated that this is the very first time we are creating a non partisan government, accent will be placed on politicians with experience in the private sector but Orešković will have the final say in the selection.

Jasmina Popović, political commentator on Croatian Television thinks it would have been better if the PM Designate was included in the entire process and if he attended the meeting since this gives us an impression that things are simply served to Orešković without him having any influence at all.

Dražen Ćurić, journalist from Večernji list had a very similar opinion:“I think it is logical for the PM Designate to attend all negotiations regarding his future Government. In normal situations, PM Designate is the one that selects the Ministers and now he is being given names with the right to veto them.

MOST and HDZ continue with their negotiations and discussions, we are supposed to have the new Government by January 18th. 2016, so it remains to be seen just how involved Orešković was in the entire process and if indeed he will have the final say in the selection of future Ministers.





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