Friday, 22 June 2018

Slovak press: Fico fails to grasp that crisis is serious

ČTK |
6 March 2018

Bratislava, March 5 (CTK) - Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-Social Democracy) has failed to see how serious the situation in Slovak society after the murder of investigative journalist Jan Kuciak and his partner is, major Slovak dailies wrote on Monday.

"We are watching a live broadcast of the end of Robert Fico. There seem to be only two people in Slovakia who cannot see it - Fico and his Interior Minister Robert Kalinak. They have become a symbol of mafia in the government, of corruption that is stronger than they and that ended with the murder of journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancee Martina Kusnirova," Dennik N writes.

The couple was shot dead in their house two weeks ago. The police said the murder seemed to be related to the work of Kuciak who focused on suspected subsidy frauds and links between politicians and entrepreneurs, including Italian mafia members operating in Slovakia.

"The murder of a journalist is such a great tragedy for the democratic society that it will leave a deep scar in the nation's soul unless political and moral responsibility for the state of the country is drawn. President Andrej Kiska understood this. However, PM Robert Fico still cannot get it," daily Sme writes.

On Sunday, Kiska openly called for either a government reconstruction or an early election.

According to Dennik N, a caretaker cabinet would be a solution, too.

"It needs to be shown that somebody bears responsibility, though merely political responsibility, when a tragedy occurs," Hospodarske noviny writes, arguing that Police President Tibor Gaspar, Kalinak (Smer-SD) and Fico should step down.

The political opposition and junior government Most-Hid demand that Kalinak be dismissed. Several aides of Fico resigned from their posts at the Government Office in the past few days.

Daily Pravda writes that Most-Hid will leave the government unless Kalinak leaves his post within a week. It recalls that one of Most-Hid lawmakers already left the government coalition due to the development after Kuciak's murder.

The risk that Most-Hid leaves the coalition or falls apart even if Kalinak resigns is increasing every day, Pravda writes.

After ten years of governments led by Fico, people in Slovakia lack trust in almost everything, including politicians, police officers, judges, prosecutors and secret services, Hospodarske noviny writes.

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