Czech press survey - February 12


12.02.2014 07:51

Prague - The case of alleged bribing of Czech MPs, in which former PM Petr Necas was accused on Tuesday, will be probably brought to court, which is positive as it will show whether the state attorneys´ steps are substantiated, Petr Kambersky writes in Lidove noviny (LN) today.


Někdejší premiér Petr Nečas (ODS) hovoří s novináři při odchodu z pražské policejní služebny, kde 14. listopadu odmítl vypovídat v kauze bývalé šéfky svého kabinetu a nynější manželky Jany Nečasové (dříve Nagyové). Případ se týká podezření z uplácení poslanců a nezákonného sledování lidí. ČTK Šimánek Vít

Necas (Civic Democrats, ODS) faces the allegations that he helped bribe the three ODS rebels into resigning as deputies in exchange of lucrative posts in state-owned companies to enable the passage of the crucial legislation they opposed.

The Supreme Court ruled last year that the three deputies' steps preceding their departure from parliament are covered by their indemnity or immunity of lawmakers.

Kambersky says the accusation of Necas seems absurd and illogical at first sight but in a certain way it ensues from the Supreme Court´s ambivalent verdict.

LN has repeatedly written that "a job offer is not a bribe" and that the legal construct of state attorney Ivo Istvan would not pass the test in court, Kambersky recalls, adding that it is only good that a court is now to confirm or refute this opinion.

"Not Necas but we desperately need to know whether state attorneys went mad in the biggest case of our modern history or whether they on the contrary helped rid the Czech Republic of ´a corruption ulcer,´" Kambersky concludes.

The Social Democrat (CSSD) regional governors, who are also MPs and thus have to choose one of these two posts within six months, have decided that "attack is the best form of defence" by proposing a bill on a flexible mandate, Lukas Jelinek writes in daily Pravo today.

The governors announced that they would submit a bill to introduce a flexible mandate and a solution to the plurality of offices by the end of March. This legislation would also apply to the ministers and mayors who were elected members of parliament at the same time, Jelinek says.

On the one hand, he admits, the regional governors cannot be blamed for their intention to solve the problem of the cumulating of posts fundamentally.

On the other hand, the fact that the governors disclosed their plans to their fellow party members via the media shows the tense internal situation in the CSSD, Jelinek indicates.

If the Social Democrats want to catch one another by surprise, they can go ahead. However, voters may have a rightful feeling that someone was pulling their leg, Jelinek concludes in Pravo.

The government policy statement of the Social Democrats (CSSD), ANO and Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) reveals their uncertainty, Petr Honzejk writes in Hospodarske noviny (HN) today.

In harmony with the rules of this genre, the document is a mixture of fairy-tale wishes (satisfied citizens and their families), poetic promises (respect for tax payers) and common matter of facts (support to world peace), Honzejk says.

However, between the lines, the policy statement does not fulfil the expectation as it is inconsistent and unclear. The government, for instance, intends to reconstruct a welfare state but it does not clearly say where it will find money for it and its foreign policy is declared to be pro-European but the date of the euro adoption is missing, Honzejk notes.

The reading of the policy statement exposes the initial paradox of the government of CSSD chairman and PM Bohuslav Sobotka, ANO leader Andrej Babis and KDU-CSL head Pavel Belobradek: they all are striving for the cabinet of certainties but they have so far succeeded in creating the government of a general uncertainty, Honzejk says in HN.

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