Robert Fico Survives No-confidence Vote

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Bratislava, February 17 (TASR) – Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) will retain his post, as the Opposition failed to oust him over the energy price scandal on Thursday.

A total of 60 lawmakers out of the 130 present in Parliament voted in favour of the no-confidence motion in the Prime Minister.

Fico received support from coalition MPs (representing Smer-SD, Most-Hid and the Slovak National Party/SNS). Independent MPs Peter Marcek and Rastislav Holubek voted against Fico’s ouster as well. The extraordinary session lasted for almost 12 hours, with 27 MPs taking the floor in the debate.

The Opposition wanted to dismiss the prime minister for failing to keep his public promise to maintain stable energy prices. “Fico put his people on boards of directors and supervisory boards of power companies. These subsequently prepared an unprecedented fraud on the public. He covered up and defended this fraud for a long time, trying to make people believe that bills that are hundreds of percent higher than in 2016 are in fact lower. He ignored the Opposition’s calls for a remedy and humiliated Opposition MPs for their efforts to help people,” read the Opposition proposal for Fico’s ouster.

Fico in his speech stated that the purpose of the extraordinary parliamentary session was to stir up conflict and to fuel public apathy towards standard political parties. “I’m appealing to coalition MPs, particularly MPs of Smer-SD, not to let themselves be drawn into this. We know what [OLaNO-NOVA chairman] Igor Matovic and others are up to: chaos and disintegration – because they have nothing else to offer. I’m asking lawmakers to do their regular jobs instead,” said Fico.