Thirty years since the “Demos” government

Lojze Peterle and Janez Janša, in the Presidential Palace, at Saturday's ceremony, marking the 30th anniversary of the election of the “Demos” government. (photo: STA/Nebojša Tejić) Lojze Peterle and Janez Janša, in the Presidential Palace, at Saturday's ceremony, marking the 30th anniversary of the election of the “Demos” government. (photo: STA/Nebojša Tejić)

On the first multi-party elections, after the Second World War, in Slovenia, in April 1990, the Demos coalition won and thus gained the right to form a new government. The first democratic government of the Republic of Slovenia was sworn in in the Slovene Assembly on 16th May 1990 and its president became Lojze Peterle.On the first multi-party elections, after the Second World War, in Slovenia, in April 1990, the Demos coalition won and thus gained the right to form a new government.

 

The first democratic government of the Republic of Slovenia was sworn in in the Slovene Assembly on 16th May 1990 and its president became Lojze Peterle.The elections, on 8th April 1990, brought victory to the Democratic Opposition of Slovenia - DEMOS and marked a break with the one-party totalitarian system. In the tense period after the elections, talks and discussions, about the composition of the government team, started in Demos. On the basis of an agreement on the appointment of a prime minister-designate, on 24th April 1990 Demos formally proposed Lojze Peterle as President of the Executive Council of the Assembly of the Republic of Slovenia. France Bučar was nominated and elected president of the assembly.Intensive negotiations, about the composition of the government and the staffing of key secretariats or ministries, followed. On 11th May 1990, the Presidency of the Republic of Slovenia granted a formal mandate, to form a government, to Lojze Peterle.

A good month after the first multi-party elections after the Second World War, the Demos Coalition Government (SKD, SKZ, SDZ, SDZS, ZS and SOS) was elected by a majority vote on 16th May 1990. In the 27-member government team, the current Prime Minister Janez Janša took over the defence department and Igor Bavčar took over the internal affairs. The Demos government was sworn in, just at the time, the operative order to disarm the TO, was being carried out. Exactly one day before the oath, an order was issued, a measure that had been being prepared for a long time, almost completely disarmed the Slovenian TO and threatened Slovenia's independence.The choice of the date of betrayal of Slovenia is probably not accidental, as it coincides with the day of the constitution of the Demos government.

But despite the stormy times, the Demos government recognized the weight of the fateful moment and fulfilled the centuries-old wishes of the Slovene nation, for its own country, in which all the Slovenes will be their own master. When it really came down to it, the Demos coalition was the one, that laid the foundations of Slovenian independence and triggered events, that led Slovenia to the introduction of a multi-party democratic system. The Demos government took Slovenes to a plebiscite on independence and successfully carried out the independence process and enabled a sovereign and independent state, of the Slovene nation.
M. B.

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