published: 20.12.2013, 17:35 | updated: 20.12.2013 17:37:00
Pec pod Snezkou - Czech President Milos Zeman should respect the tradition and deliver his address on January 1, Zeman´s predecessor Vaclav Klaus told reporters today.
Klaus also said as head of state (2003-2013), he had never dared not to appoint any minister proposed by the PM. He hinted at Zeman indicating that he would not agree with certain candidates for ministers.
Zeman will not deliver a traditional New Year speech but he will instead deliver his Christmas message to the nation from the Lany presidential chateau, central Bohemia, on December 26.
"The New Year's address should exist but is should be given by a functioning and functional president," said Klaus who will attend the Duel debate programme on Prima TV on January 1.
Zeman's spokesman Jiri Ovcacek pointed out that the president had decided to follow up the habit from the interwar Czechoslovakia when similar speeches had been delivered by Czechoslovak President Tomas Garrigue Masaryk (1918-1935) and his successor Edvard Benes, Ovcacek told CTK.
Zeman's predecessors in the post of Czech president Vaclav Havel (1993-2003), Czechoslovak President in 1989-1992, and Vaclav Klaus addressed Czech citizens on January 1.
Previously, the heads of state were speaking to the nation at Christmas time.
The first Communist President Klement Gottwald (1948-1953) cancelled the tradition of Christmas addresses and he started to deliver a presidential speech on January 1, starting in 1949.
Klaus is watching the constitution of a new government of the Social Democrats (CSSD), ANO and Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) at a distance since it does not concern him for the first time after 24 years, Klaus told reporters after reopening the cableway to Snezka (1602 m), the highest Czech mountain.
Zeman said previously he might not appoint all ministers proposed by CSSD chairman and potential PM Bohuslav Sobotka.
Zeman wants to meddle in the formation of a new government as he would like the ministries to be headed by people well-versed in the respective sector.
Klaus recalled that he had often felt doubts about some candidates for ministers since he had been convinced that they would not manage the task but he would have never refused to appoint them.
He added that the new government would not please him anyway regardless of possible changes in its lineup.
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