Opposition: Fico’s Night Shift A Farce and Effort to Halt Falling Support

OLaNO head Igor Matovic (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, November 26 (TASR) – The Opposition, namely OLaNO, Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) and the extra-parliamentary Christian Democrats (KDH), condemned the night shift that Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) did as a gesture of solidarity at the Lozorno Automobile Industrial Park on Saturday night, calling it cheap theatre, a farce and an effort to slow down the fall in support for Smer-SD.

According to OLaNO head Igor Matovic, Slovakia experienced unprecedented theatre over the previous night on the part of the prime minister, who has been the most powerful man in the country for ten years, but until now he hasn’t once thought of higher bonuses for night, weekend and holiday work. Moreover, his governing Smer-SD party didn’t support an OLaNO-sponsored proposal to increase the bonuses some six months ago, stated Matovic.

SaS leader Richard Sulik views the prime minister’s night shift as a farce and called on Fico to stay at the factory longer than one night. “He should stay in that factory and work manually, because when he works by his own head, he only causes problems and economic damage to the country,” the party’s spokesperson Katarina Svrcekova quoted Sulik as saying.

The SaS head went on to say that going to a factory for one night is a thrilling experience rather than a serious job. “After a few years, he wouldn’t be leaving (the plant) with such a smile in the morning … The prime minister’s job is to manage the country well so that employees and employers live better, and not to participate in low comedy,” he said.

According to KDH chairman Alojz Hlina, Fico is aware that the fall of his support is irreversible, and therefore he is trying to slow down this process at least. “[He’s doing it] through actions that the Opposition performs all the time and of which he has been permanently making fun,” said Hlina, who took part in a harvest this past summer. “We’re glad that we inspire,” he added, wondering what else the premier is capable of doing in order to stop the fall of his support.

Fico on Saturday as part of his night shift welded special components for car doors at a company called IAC Group Slovakia between 10 p.m.-6 a.m. (Saturday-Sunday). He did the eight-hour night shift as a gesture of solidarity with employees who work during the night, weekends and holidays.

Higher bonuses for night, weekend and holiday work form a part of the measures introduced by the coalition in the so-called social package.