President: I’ll Appoint New Cabinet, Although I’m Not Fully Happy

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President Andrej Kiska announces his decision to appoint the cabinet of Peter Pellegrini on March 21, 2018 (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, March 21 (TASR) – President Andrej Kiska will appoint the new government of Peter Pellegrini on Thursday (March 22), TASR learnt on Wednesday.

The head of state announced this decision after meeting with new members of the Cabinet earlier in the day.

Kiska conceded that he’s not completely happy with the names at the helm of some ministries. “But as the head of state, I won’t step over the line defined by the Constitution and constitutional practice,” he said. Furthermore, Kiska underlined that the Cabinet of Peter Pellegrini has already received support from the majority of lawmakers and no other politician has informed him about the existence of any other parliamentary majority.

Kiska pointed out that three weeks ago when the cabinet of Robert Fico (Smer-SD) was imploding and it wasn’t clear whether the coalition would survive, he pledged his readiness to steer the country through the political crisis and complex situation in the wake of the murders of journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancee. “Aware of this responsibility, I employed the powers of the president to the limit of the constitutional practice and options available. I rejected the first proposal to appoint the next cabinet,” he claimed.

The President stressed that the new government must win the trust of Parliament and the public alike. “In the prevailing climate, this will be a challenging task. I hope that every minister is aware of this responsibility and, as President, I’ll make sure that they won’t be able to forget this responsibility even for a split second”.

As part of the personnel reshuffling, aside from the new Prime Minister, Richard Rasi (Smer-SD) will become new vice-premier for investments and informatisation, Tomas Drucker (a Smer-SD nominee) interior minister, Andrea Kalavska (a Smer-SD nominee) health minister, Lubica Lassakova (Smer-SD) culture minister and Gabor Gal (Most-Hid) justice minister.