published: 09.07.2012, 15:36 | updated: 09.07.2012 15:57:55
Prague - Jan Fischer, former Czech prime minister who wants to run for president next year, will resign as European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) vice president after his Czech presidential candidacy is officially registered, he told journalists today.
Fischer today started collecting Czech citizens´ signatures he needs to become a regular candidate for Czech president. At least 50,000 signatures are required.
Fischer, 61, has returned from London, his current residence, now already. He has taken an unpaid leave until his resignation from the EBRD post.
He said he has returned to the Czech Republic in order to talk to people and learn their opinions.
He described his stay in London as "very useful and considerably beneficial for his possible exercising of the Czech president´s office."
As a EBRD vice-president since September 2010, Fischer has met more foreign presidents and prime ministers than when he headed the Czech interim cabinet of unaffiliated experts from April 2009 to July 2010.
Fischer said he wants to fully focus on the presidential election campaign now, though he "imposed an active rest for the summer" on himself, that he wants to spend with his family at their country house. Nevertheless, he wants to meet people and NGO representatives simultaneously, he said.
Out of several politicians who have announced their plan to seek the presidential post in early 2013, only former PM Milos Zeman has gathered the required number of signatures so far, the Citizens´ Rights Party of Milos Zeman (SPOZ) said recently.
Zeman, former Social Democrats (CSSD) chairman, fell out with the CSSD in the past years and became honorary head of the extra-parliamentary SPOZ.
Fischer said he has established a transparent account to enable the public to check the financing of his campaign. He said he relies on voluntary aides. He would not use advertising agencies´ services, but some businessmen, such as Medea advertising agency´s owner Jaromir Soukup, will work for him for free.
"He will be assisting on behalf of himself, as Soukup, not as the Medea agency," Fischer said.
Fischer, former head of the Czech Statistical Office and the presidential election favourite, according to public opinion polls, emphasises his impartiality, his experiences from executive posts as well as foreign politics, and says if elected, he would respect the legal order and reject displays of extremism.
People can sign the petition in support of Fischer´s candidacy in his office in Prague. Moreover, Fischer and his aides are building a network of centers where the petition sheets will be available.
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