12 May 15
Montenegro PM Complains of ‘Masochistic’ Coalition
Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic expressed his harshest ever criticism of his governing allies, the Social Democratic Party, saying that their longstanding coalition was a painful relationship.
Djukanovic expressed frustration on Monday that the smaller party in the ruling coalition, the Social Democratic Party, SDP, led by parliament speaker Ranko Krivokapic, has often voted with opposition MPs on important laws in recent years.
He accused the SDP of deceiving the public by remaining part of a government that it wants to “tear down through mechanisms of parliamentary control”.
He that the ruling coalition at the national level only was only held together by its mutual support for Montenegro’s bid to join NATO.
“Otherwise there would not be any other reason to suffer such masochism,” he said during a debate with prominent Montenegrin journalists on local Atlas TV.
“We only bear this because we trying to get an invitation for NATO membership; all other reasons lead us to early elections,” he added.
Djukanovic’s Democratic Party of Socialists and the SDP have made up the ruling coalition at the national level for more than 15 years.
But the SDP has often criticized the government’s performance in reforming the judiciary and the state of media freedom.
The two parties agreed to redefine their relations last May following months of conflict over the privatisation of the state-owned electric power company, Elektroprivreda, the leasing of a luxury coastal resort to foreign investors and the fight against organised crime and corruption. They signed an annex to their coalition agreement proclaiming EU and NATO membership as their joint priority.
Djukanovic’s party has now been in power for 25 years, which makes Montenegro the only state in the Balkans that has been run by the same party without interruption ever since its first democratic elections in 1990.
The current government was elected on December 2012. It comprises Djukanovic’s DPS, the SDP and three ethnic minority parties. The next general elections are due in 2016.
Source: Balkan Insight (Montenegro)