Vasecka Leaves OLaNO to Challenge Hlina for Post of KDH Chair

Former Opposition OLaNO caucus chairman Richard Vasecka joining KDH (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, February 8 (TASR) – Former Opposition OLaNO caucus chairman Richard Vasecka, who announced his departure from OLaNO and joined the extra-parliamentary Christian Democratic Movement (KDH) on Wednesday evening (February 7), is set to challenge incumbent KDH head Alojz Hlina for the chairman post at the upcoming party congress in Ruzomberok (Zilina region) in March, TASR learnt on Thursday.

Speaking at a briefing, Vasecka said he decided to run as KDH chairman after having received a strong and urgent call from inside the party itself.

According to Vasecka, KDH has allegedly stopped being a Christian and democratic movement and he wants to change that. “I have been approached by both the founding and new members of KDH. I want to boost the Christian policy in Slovakia,” he said, adding that KDH with current chairman Hlina at the helm is unacceptable to many. “I’m able to address these people,” he said.

Vasecka went on to say that Hlina has a problem with getting along with most of the Opposition leaders, including Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) head Richard Sulik, We Are Family leader Boris Kollar and OLaNO chairman Igor Matovic. Vasecka is convinced he can bring people together.

“Not only is my goal to get the movement to Parliament, but I want it to be in the government. … KDH must choose what style it wants to follow,” he said.

Vasecka also said that running for the post of KDH chair is a political risk, because if Hlina wins at the March congress, Vasecka will remain only a regular KDH member and won’t run as an MP under the Christian Democrats in the parliamentary elections due in 2020.

The former OLaNO member stressed that he doesn’t consider himself to be a better Christian than Hlina. “But the Christian lifestyle and Christian thinking are natural for me. People say I’m a more authentic Christian than Hlina,” he added.

Of the originally 19-member OLaNO caucus, there are currently only 16 MPs. In addition to Vasecka, Viera Dubacova and Oto Zarnay left the Opposition party to join the recently created party Together-Civic Democracy (SPOLU) of Miroslav Beblavy.