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KPV LV: previous agreement shattered. Politicians re-elect the old Saeima Praesidium

Artuss Kaimiņš/flickr.com/Saeima
During the first meeting of the 13th Saeima, deputies elected the new Praesidium. According to information from Saeima’s website, members of the Praesidium are usually elected from the largest parties represented in the Saeima.

Parties that received the most support during Saeima elections decided to stick with this practice – with a prior agreement in regards to posts in the Praesidium, no less. However, as the vote drew closer, the prior agreement suddenly fell apart. According to KPV LV, the practice of ‘sharing’ remains among old politicians.
 

It is worth mentioning that two parties were not elected to the Saeima Praesidium: KPV LV and the Union of Greens and Farmers.
 

Ināra Mūrniece from the National Alliance was re-elected as the speaker of the Saeima: 44 deputies voted in her favour and 32 voted against.
 

What is particularly interesting is that Harmony did not participate in the vote for the most important post in the Saeima – the parliament’s speaker.
 

The vote is an open one, someone may have damaged their ballots, some decided not to vote. It should be said that Saeima’s internal order does allow deputies to abstain from the vote. But how ethically and politically responsible would that be?
 

After the difficult division of posts, KPV LV representative Artuss Kaimiņš posted a comment on his Facebook page that Mūrniece was elected thanks to Harmony’s decision to not participate in the vote.
 

He also said that the New Conservative Party, Attīstībai/Par!, KPV LV and National Alliance had a talk before the vote. Those parties had agreed on the division of posts in the Praesidium. According to him, all political parties that participated in those talks had agreed to put representatives from parties that had received the most seats and votes in the 13th Saeima elections in the Praesidium.
 

«We had agreed to have two people candidate for the post of Saeima speaker. The first candidate was Dagmāra Beitnere-Le Galla from the New Conservative Party, whereas the other was Ināra Mūrniece from the National Alliance. As for the post of the Saeima speaker’s assistant, the plan was to put the person who would not be elected as the Saeima speaker. In this case it would be either of the two,» Kaimiņš said.
 

The deputy also mentioned that there was a previous agreement in regards to other posts. He was a candidate for the post of the second assistant of the Saeima speaker. The politician notes that an agreement was reached to provide Harmony’s representative a seat in Saeima Praesidium, as well. The fifth seat in the Praesidium was planned to be given to Attīstībai/Par! member Marija Golubeva. «No one had problems with that. The problems were only in regards to the next Saeima speaker,» said Kaimiņš.
 

It should be said that Dagmāra Beitnere-Le Galla was elected as deputy Saeima speaker. 65 deputies voted in her favour and 34 voted against.
 

With 65 votes in favour and 31 votes against, Inese Lībiņa-Egnere from New Unity was elected to 13th Saeima Praesidium as second deputy speaker.
 

Andrejs Klementjevs from Harmony was also elected Saeima secretary(55 votes in favour and 32 against).
 

Marija Golubeva from Attīstībai/Par! was elected as the Saeima deputy secretary with 64 votes in favour and 34 against.
 

Kaimiņš believes NA has failed to comply with the previously made agreement in regards to the future Praesidium. «NA decided to cast us out; sold us in favour of New Unity and Attīstībai/Par!» He also notes no support was received from other parties, except for NCP, which held its promise and exchanged votes to try and ensure representatives from parties that had received the most support could enter the Praesidium.
 

It should be mentioned that on Praesidium election day, NA representative Rihards Kols affirmed in a conversation with BNN support towards the idea of composing the Praesidium from the five largest parties elected to the Saeima. He said: «I will not mention other positions, considering how unclear things are. But specifically in regards to the Saeima speaker, the National Alliance has its own candidate. It is well-known other parties have their own candidates. Nevertheless, we will insist on Ināra Mūrniece becoming the Saeima speaker. We will vote accordingly.»
 

Kaimiņš believes «those who drew the largest red lines have re-elected the old Praesidium». «The Saeima will have to work with the old Praesidium for some time – it is not a new Praesidium».
 

«I believe for the first time in the history of the parliament of the Republic of Latvia when a right-wing party is not represented in the Praesidium,» Kaimiņš explains his shock over KPV LV’s failure to enter the Praesidium.
 

«We had agreed to represent all the largest parties elected to the Saeima. New Unity is not one of them – they have eight seats, we have sixteen. I don’t know how to say this: no one will hand over power – this much is clear. But this is only the beginning,» he said.

BNN

08-11-2018
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