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Latvia’s President Raimonds Vējonis will not stand candidate for second term

Raimonds Vējonis/president.lv
Latvia’s President Raimonds Vējonis has decided to not become a candidate for a second term. This means there is only one other potential presidential candidate – lawyer Egils Levits, who has already secured support from parties of the ruling coalition and is promised support from more than half of Saeima deputies.

After meeting with Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš, the president added that he has accomplished a lot during his term – state security has been, Latvian language has been established as the sole state language, and reforms in multiple state administration sectors have been commenced.

«For four years I have worked for the benefit of Latvian people to the best of my ability. […] But of course these were only several years aimed at raising Latvia’s longevity and welfare,» said Vējonis.

According to the State Presidential Election Law, candidates for the post are to be submitted to the Saeima Praesidium in written form no earlier than 60 and no later than 55 days before the end of the term of the ruling president. New candidates will be allowed to be proposed for this post starting with 9 May 2019.

The Saeima elects the state president for a four-year term.

Vējonis was elected as Latvia’s president 3 June 2015 when he received support from 55 Saeima deputies. His support exceeded that of Levits then.

As a presidential candidate, Vējonis named national unity, national awareness, patriotism and social justice as priorities. «I will work to ensure we – people, political parties, government and the Saeima – work as a team and all decisions are aimed at the country’s development. Honour to serve Latvia!» Vējonis concluded his speech after his election.

Vējonis is Latvia’s fifth president since the restoration of independence, and ninth since the foundation of Latvian state.

Before entering politics, Vējonis was a deputy of Madona City Council. He also worked as board member of Skulte port. Until 2002 he was the director of Lielriga Regional Environment Office. He also served as Latvia’s environment minister and defence minister for a long time. Throughout his political career he was elected to the 9th, 10th and 11th Saeima.

In 1989 Vējonis acquired the profession of a biologist, biology and chemistry teacher in the Biology Faculty of the University of Latvia. He also acquired education in water and environment management in Finland Technical University of Tampere in 1994, as well as Master’s degree in Biology in the University of Latvia in 1995.


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