MEP Blasko Leaves SPD With Open Letter Criticising Okamura

Blasko accused Okamura of over-riding the wishes of party members and surrounding himself with yes-men. Credit: Hynek Blasko via Facebook

Prague, Sept 15 (CTK) – Czech MEP Hynek Blasko is leaving the far-right Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD), he announced in a letter to leader Tomio Okamura published on Facebook, the server Forum 24 reported today.

Blasko wrote that Okamura’s conduct towards SPD members was undemocratic. He only surrounds himself with people who never dare to argue with him, said Blasko, and intervenes in the composition of regional lists of candidates.

Blasko had previously expressed an interest in running for Czech president, but Okamura announced on Saturday that MP Jaroslav Basta was the sole SPD candidate for the presidential election.

Okamura told CTK today that Blasko had taken offence, and was betraying SPD voters just because he wanted to be the president, but a different candidate had been chosen by the party board.

“Mr President of the SPD, with this letter I terminate my SPD membership (I enclose my party identity card),” Blasko wrote to Okamura.

“Your movement takes pride in its democracy, but the reality is quite different. The party statutes allow you to sack members, and eliminate regional and local branches without any proper justification. For this reason, you are only surrounded by the people who are loyal to you and don’t dare to oppose you,” he added.

Blasko said Okamura did not respect the decisions of regional organisations over the composition of election lists of candidates.

“You install in them people who are not connected at all to the region in question. Besides, they hail from rival parties such as the Social Democrats and the Civic Democratic Party (ODS) who bring the manners of these parties into the movement. The party members dislike it, but if they disagree, they are thrown out,” he added.

Okamura responded that the real reason for Blasko’s departure was quite simple.

“Mr Blasko took offence and played a dirty trick on SPD voters, thanks to whom he became an MEP only because he wanted to be the president. However, 250 members of the SPD national board unanimously chose Basta on Saturday. None of the SPD board members proposed Blasko,” he added.

Blasko has mismanaged the situation, telling lies about the SPD and “behaving like a small child who lost his toy,” Okamura said.

In late May, Blasko announced on Facebook that he wanted to run for president, but on Saturday, SPD told the media that Basta, a former Czech ambassador to Russia and Ukraine, would be its candidate for president. He was backed by 20 SPD deputies.

Okamura added that Basta would be the sole SPD candidate.

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