SaS and OLaNO-NOVA Won’t Form Shadow Cabinet

Opposition party chairs Boris Kollar, Richard Sulik and Igor Matovic (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, December 27 (TASR) – Opposition parties Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) and OLaNO-NOVA won’t form a shadow government after all, SaS leader Richard Sulik has confirmed for TASR.

Back in the summer the two parties set up an Opposition Council and publicly stated that they might create a shadow cabinet.

“Operating a coalition in opposition is a can of worms. SaS is a stand-alone party. We conceded that [a shadow government] before, but now we’re clear. We have an Opposition Council where we meet, and there’s no reason to develop that cooperation any further with an election so far away. It’s the experience of various other politicians,” said Sulik.

OLaNO-NOVA leader Igor Matovic claimed in response that Sulik has stood in opposition to the concept of a shadow government since the outset. “We, on the other hand, thought that its creation would have been very useful in order to demonstrate to people that we have people capable of taking over power after an election. This, however, is one of the issues on which we haven’t concurred despite [the existence of] the Opposition Council, unfortunately,” he said.

In all likelihood the Opposition Council won’t be enlarged, either. When it was founded in May, both Sulik and Matovic didn’t rule out the possibility of inviting the We Are Family party of Boris Kollar to join later, but they claimed that they needed to get to know each other first. Kollar has made it clear recently that he doesn’t wish to join, however. “I have an issue with some people morals wise. I wouldn’t have joined the Opposition Council even if they had invited me at the very beginning. But then I would have had to explain why I’m not coming in, but they’ve spared me that in this way. This doesn’t mean, however, that I’m not willing to cooperate. We frequently vote in favour of legislation sponsored by OLaNO-NOVA and SaS if it’s to people’s benefit,” said Kollar.

A shadow government was formed by Smer-SD when it was in opposition in 2011-12. The shadow cabinet had regular sessions and even away-from-home sessions in the regions. A number of its members later became ministers in 2012.