First Reactions after the Election of a Speaker of the 48th Bulgarian Parliament

Politics | October 21, 2022, Friday // 17:45|  views

Vezhdi Rashidov

The 48th National Assembly has finally elected its chairman - Vezhdi Rashidov from GERB. The parliament is unblocked and the groups formed. However, the formation of a new majority between GERB-SDS, DPS, BSP and "Bulgarian Rise" behind Rashidov heated up the passions in the parliament.

"Today we saw that GERB told Rashidov what to do and he didn't give a break", said the co-chairman of "We Continue the Change" Asen Vassilev on the occasion of the elected speaker. He stated that his group did not support Vezhdi Rashidov, as he was a candidate of GERB.

Vezhdi Rashidov was elected speaker of the 48th National Assembly with 139 votes in favor, 73 against and 27 abstentions

"A person who said yesterday that he does not want to hold this position cannot be elected as the chairman of the National Assembly," Vassilev added.

BSP leader Kornelia Ninova said that she presented Rashidov's candidacy as she was asked by the other parliamentary groups and by Rashidov himself. On the occasion of the rupture in the relations between the “left” and WCC, she stated that they were caused by yesterday's invitation of Petkov and Vassilev for a leadership meeting, with which the WCC hinted at behind the scenes actions. Ninova also claims that "We Continue the Change" used their social program.

She stated that despite today's vote, BSP will not support a government with a mandate from GERB, DPS and "Vazrazhdane". However, she did not answer a question about whether they would rely on this majority, but with their mandate.

Ninova said that she expects that in the event of an unsuccessful first term, if the “We Continue the Change” invites them, they will go to a meeting.

The co-chairman of "Democratic Bulgaria" Hristo Ivanov commented that GERB, DPS, BSP and "Bulgarian Rise" calculated that they have enough votes to unite around Rashidov's candidacy and that this became clear at the penultimate chairmanship council today. At it, the leaders agreed to talk with their groups, but Ivanov was late for the meeting with his group and was absent from the last council, after which the final decision was made that Rashidov would head the parliament.

"The colleagues had the right to ask for a 15-minute break. No parliamentary group has ever had to justify why it wanted a break. We have always given breaks in recent meetings when necessary. For me, this is not a small matter, it shows how a political majority crystallizes. The four formations started to show strength very quickly in the hall after that", explained Hristo Ivanov.

In his words, it was no surprise for DB that BSP stood on the principle of political majority and voted "for" Rashidov: "Just yesterday we knew that this was an unacceptable option for DB and WCC. We have differences with BSP, bigger than today's vote. We will see what the course of BSP will be in the future", he said.

Hristo Ivanov expects that there is an option for forming a government from these four parties and that it will be defined as "expert", "nationally responsible" or "for the salvation of Bulgaria". The co-chairman of DB emphasized that at the last chairmanship council, WCC asked whether a consensus could not be found regarding a possible candidacy for the chairman from “Democratic Bulgaria".

"We didn't set out to present one, but we were willing to think about it. BSP, GERB and DPS refused to reflect on such a candidacy, because they had already decided to unite around the candidacy of Mr. Rashidov", said Hristo Ivanov and added that DB were ready to propose several candidates.

The leader of "Vazrazhdane" Kostadin Kostadinov repeated his thesis that this parliament was stillborn. For him, the sudden support of BSP for Vezhdi Rashidov is not a surprise. He commented how today at the chairmanship council he heard that the other political forces were ready to compromise:

"In order to push their bills, today they united around the idea that this National Assembly should start working. After three days of terrible birth pangs, what we see was born. This means that this NA is really stillborn, now we will witness agony - all kinds of inflationary processes will develop, the war is intensifying, the timelessness is also growing", he said.

Kostadinov predicts that the 48th National Assembly will last about two months. He pointed out that "Vazrazhdane" has already submitted six bills to the office and added that next week they will submit 20 more. "If we get the third mandate, we are ready with the composition of the government", Kostadin Kostadinov also said.

The leader of the DPS, Mustafa Karadayi, announced that his party has been maintaining a level of constructiveness in decision-making for three days now. "By the way, we have been like this for 32 years, but in recent days we have seen all sorts of attempts to collapse parliamentarism, I hope that this process will end as soon as possible," he said.

The leader of GERB-SDS Boyko Borissov also commented on the election of the chairman:

"Reason prevailed! First among equals - Vezhdi Rashidov! This is how he lives, this is how he will work," he wrote on Facebook and posted a photo with his former minister of culture.

The new speaker of the parliament, Vezhdi Rashidov, announced to the journalists that he has accepted to head the National Assembly "in order to stop fooling around with the people" and to adopt the budget and the laws under the Recovery and Sustainability Plan. He added that the NSO security would “weigh on him” as he is “a free artist, but the boys were cute”.

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Tags: Rashidov, GERB, Ninova, parliament


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