From self-praise to criticism

From self-praise to criticism

Evaluating the first half year of his government in power, Prime Minister Igor Matovič (OLaNO) posted on a social network on Monday that he has never seen more strenuous ministers than those in his Cabinet. "They've been working at full blast despite coronavirus and despite all obstacles within the system, with leftover children of the mafia at ministries 'throwing logs under their feet' wherever and whenever they can," stated the prime minister. Matovič said he's proud of his team, though admitting that "some of them are doing well, while some of them are not doing so well". Matovič criticised the previous governments led by Peter Pellegrini (Independent) and Robert Fico (Smer-SD), estimating that €30 billion was stolen under their governments. The junior coalition party Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) has also been celebrating that the cabinet has managed to push through several things that have moved Slovakia forward.

In the opposition camp, former Prime Minister and head of the extra-parliamentary party Voice-SD, Peter Pellegrini, thinks that Slovakia is governed by a band of amateurs. "The Government lacks a plan for Slovakia's key problems, namely the coronavirus crisis and the surging economic crisis," stated Pellegrini. In his view, Labour Minister Milan Krajniak (We Are Family), for instance, has been taking money away from the most vulnerable members of society, while Health Minister Marek Krajči (OLaNO) has failed to manage the coronavirus outbreak. According to the opposition party Smer-SD, the Government's first six months in office can be characterised by incompetence, amateurism, lack of expertise and disgrace.

Apart from the coronavirus epidemic, Igor Matovič's governing coalition has had to deal with three cases of plagiarism, including that of the Prime Minister himself, along with the Education minister and Speaker of Parliament, and accusations of politicization in the recruitment of people for important positions in public administration such as that of heads of district offices. "So far, it seems that the government, like every other before it, has not avoided controversial nominations or controversial decisions, but that is simply part of governing. Ultimately, it will be important for its "success" how well it fulfils their main promise, which is 'cleansing the barn'," said political analyst Erik Laštic. Sociologist Martin Slosiarik adds that voters have high expectations from the current Government, and that some of them may not be so patient, at least according to the latest opinion poll results showing that the Matovič's Olano movement has lost about 6 percentage points as compared to their election result.

Anca Dragu, Photo: TASR

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