Bulgarian President Defends Decision to Dissolve Parliament

Domestic | March 5, 2013, Tuesday // 16:32|  views

Tuesday Movement for Rights and Freedoms leader Lyutvi Mestan (L) returned the last-attempt cabinet formation mandate to Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev (R). Photo by BGNES

Heady social and political events in Bulgaria mean that citizens' voices must be heard on elections, stated Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev.

Tuesday the third and consitutionally last attempt at cabinet formation fell through, after Lyutvi Mestan, leader of Bulgaria's third-largest parliamentary party, the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, officially returned the presidential mandate.

This means that President Plevneliev must now appoint a caretaker government, dissolve parliament, and call early elections.

The vote is expected to be held May 12, just two months ahead of the regular date in July.

"When there is no political trust left, it is better that new legislation be crafted in a new parliament," stated Plevneliev Tuesday.

Acting Bulgarian PM Boyko Borisov filed his resignation in a surprise move February 20, after a string of massive anti-stagnation and anti-corruption protests across the country.

Plevneliev has been criticized for giving the third and last mandate to the Movement by the Blue Coalition, currently Bulgaria's fourth-largest parliamentary group.

According to Bulgaria's constitution, Art.99(1-3), the first two attempts at cabinet formation must be granted in succession to the two largest parliamentary groups, but the third mandate can be given to any other parliamentary party.

All of the three largest groups in the Bulgarian Parliament - the now ruling GERB, the Bulgarian Socialist Party, and MRF - had declared they would return the mandate.

However, Blue Coalition co-leader Ivan Kostov (Bulgaria's PM 1997-2001), had declared the is ready to form a parliamentarily-elected cabinet, which, if successful, would have served until regular elections in July.

In his statement Tuesday, President Plevneliev recalled that at the emergency Consultative Council for National Security February 26, it became clear that other parliamentary groups were not in support of a further cabinet elected by the current parliament.

What is more, he reiterated his position that ongoing popular protests have shown that Bulgaria's citizens have lost trust in the present parliament and need to have their voices heard in a vote.

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Tags: Blue Coalition, Ivan Kostov, mandate, Movement for Rights and Freedoms, caretaker government, Rosen Plevneliev, Lyutvi Mestan, protests, Boyko Borisov, GERB, Bulgarian Socialist Party, stagnation, elections, MRF


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