14. 06. 2018 15:13
This time next year, Andrej Kiska will no longer be Slovakia's president. His last state of the republic addressed to the parliament revolved around the main issues Slovakia has been dealing with in the first half of 2018. First of all, the murder of journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kušnírová, as well as the political crisis that followed.
In the opening of his speech, Kiska labelled the last, unfinished article of Ján Kuciak, published after his death, as the most important report on the state of the republic in 2018. Kiska spoke about the deep mistrust in the state that prevails in Slovak society, but there exists a determination to change this. He said: "What Slovakia is facing in 2018 is not a crisis of mistrust in justice and the rule of law. It is a crisis of faith in the fact that politicians are able and ready to create conditions for better relations within the state. People were also driven into the streets by the belief that Slovakia could be better, that Slovakia could be decent."
Kiska also mentioned the recent killing of expat Henry Acorda in Bratislava, the problems of farmers, the upcoming parliamentary votes about the new rules for the police and the election of Constitutional Court judges. Finally, the demographic challenges to which Slovakia is failing to respond.
The president's speech mentioned the abrogation of amnesties that count as abuse of law under the government of the former Slovak Prime Minister Vladimír Mečiar. Kiska addressed his words in particular to the representatives of the government and to the parliamentary majority: "How we will remember 2018 depends on your decisions. Whether as a wasted chance that will serve as a source of conspiracy, speculations and non-investigated suspicions, thus resulting in a permanent mistrust of politics among people, or as a year when we worked and started to do all that was needed to recover people's trust in the state."
Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini considers the president's message in parliament as well-known phrases: "He is repeating himself - it is nothing new. These are phrases. I would even say that the situation described by the president has even repeatedly been better reported by the media."
MP Jana Kiššová from the liberal party SaS (Freedom and Solidarity) found that the president's critical report hit the right place: "I think that his criticisms are really unprejudiced. The president was speaking about real problems, basing himself on facts."