SPOLU pro Prahu, via Facebook

Prague City Council: Coalition Negotiations Between SPOLU and Pirate Party End Without Agreement

SPOLU and the Pirates have failed to agree on a coalition in Prague. Photo credit: SPOLU pro Prahu, via Facebook.

Prague, Dec 6 (CTK) – The SPOLU alliance of the Civic Democrats (ODS), TOP 09 and Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) has not found any agreement with the Pirates about forming a coalition in Prague, and will no longer seek further talks with them, its negotiators have told journalists.

SPOLU will begin negotiations about possible support for a minority city council, and plans to talk to all parties in the Prague assembly apart from the far-right Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD), they said after a meeting with the Pirates and the Mayors and Independents (STAN).

Outgoing Prague Mayor Zdenek Hrib (Pirates) said SPOLU is insisting on occupying the post of mayor and having a majority in the 11-member city council, which is unacceptable for the Pirates.

It is not yet clear how the minority council would work.

Bohuslav Svoboda, ODS candidate for mayor, said SPOLU had offered major concessions to the Pirates, such as letting them head the transport sector, but the Pirates had not accepted it.

Hrib, however, said SPOLU made no concessions on major issues, and that it would not be legitimate for SPOLU to get enough power to decide on everything itself, when they  only won 25% of the vote in the elections.

The elections were held 73 days ago, and the protracted negotiations about the new leadership of the capital city is the longest in the history of the Czech Republic. In 2010 and 2014, the council and the mayor were installed one and a half months after the Prague elections.

Svoboda said it was in the interests of all people living in Prague.that an agreement on the city council was reached as soon as possible and that negotiations with the Pirates had led nowhere.

Zdenek Zajicek (ODS) said the demand that SPOLU has a majority in the council is crucial, but was rejected by the Pirates. “There is nothing to negotiate about anymore,” he said.

Zajicek said SPOLU had done its best to create a coalition of parties that participate in the national coalition government.

STAN deputy chairman Jan Lacina said the meeting today was a disappointment for him and his colleagues. He said it seemed appropriate to him if SPOLU had five seats in the council, the Pirates four and the STAN two.

SPOLU won 19 seats in the 65-seat assembly after local elections held on 23-24 September. ANO finished second with 14 seats, the Pirates third with 13, Prague For Itself fourth with 11 mandates, STAN fifth with five and the anti-EU Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD) sixth with three seats.

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