By: Tanja Brkić / Nova24TV.si
“If until now we have been saying that the deep state is in the background, the latest actions of the current government are proof that we have apparently had it on the surface for some time,” said the leader of the parliamentary group of the Slovenian Democratic Party in her interview for Siol. Among other things, she spoke about the operation and moves of the new government under the leadership of Dr Robert Golob, the work of the President of the National Assembly Urška Klakočar Zupančič, the referendum initiatives put forward by the SDS, the recruitment of journalists in government services and the challenges that Slovenia is facing.
Jelka Godec is the only woman among the leaders of parliamentary groups, after she took over this role after two determined politicians, Jože Tank and Danijel Krivec. She said that they gave a special stamp to the leadership of the SDS parliamentary group and that she learned a lot from them. It is precisely this variety that brings dynamism to the work, which is not easy to do. In her opinion, managing such a large parliamentary group requires a great deal of responsibility and correctness. In the future, the leader of the parliamentary group wants an open dialogue, discussion, and exchange of opinions, which leads to homogeneous, creative, and quality work in each team, which I believe the citizens will reward in the next elections with an even higher percentage of votes than SDS received in this year’s parliamentary elections.
At the outset, Godec criticised the actions of the President of the National Assembly, Urška Klakočar Zupančič, who has so far denied or violated the rules of procedure in cases of distribution of jobs and leadership of the National Assembly sessions, exposing MPs who are not in the chamber, and inappropriate comments and observations during the leadership. All this should indicate her ignorance of her mission. “It is hard to say that she is the first among equals, because without a doubt we are not all the same. Some of us respect the rules of procedure and parliamentary practice, while others do not,” she said.
At this point, she particularly pointed out the recent unacceptable behaviour of the President of the National Assembly, when she started listing all her colleagues who were not in the hall at a certain moment. It is my obligation as the leader of the parliamentary group to point out, on my own behalf and on behalf of the parliamentary group, any violation of the rules of procedure and deviation from established, three-decade-long parliamentary practice. “I felt that the list of allegedly missing or absent colleagues without an excuse in the chamber was mobbing,” because the job of a member of parliament is not to sit in the chamber for twelve hours, not speak a word, not know the content of the laws and other acts under consideration, and at the end of the session only be a “voting machine”. Godec is convinced that, in addition to active participation in meetings, parliamentary work also includes meeting citizens and interest groups, preparing for debates and preparing the positions of the parliamentary group.
Golob is just announcing measures or introducing some really funny ones
As for the forecast for the fall, Godec reminded that immediately after taking over the government in March 2020, Janša’s government started creating the first anti-coronavirus package of intervention measures from the ten later adopted, so they are worried by the fact that Golob’s government is only announcing the measures, while it does not have a clear strategy. “Too many times we witness the fact that the Prime Minister makes a rather populist statement or promise in public, which later turns out to be neither feasible nor based on facts. Let’s just remember the financial incentives for firefighters who recently put out a fire in the Karst, or the idea of buying wheat from Slovenian farmers. Neither of these two promises has been fulfilled to date,” or then they find some “ridiculous solution”, such as price monitoring or the maximum permitted temperature in public administration premises, not to mention the treatment of covid-19 with sea and sun.
Judging by past experiences, for many people treatment with the so-called natural remedies and refusal of medical help was also fatal. “Minister of Health Danijel Bešič Loredan has repeatedly emphasised that the epidemic will be managed by the profession. If the experts at NIJZ are now proposing the measure mentioned by Golob, then we have returned to the time of the beginning of the epidemic, when the management of NIJZ at the time advised sneezing and coughing into your sleeve, and called the coronavirus a flu,” said Godec and expressed her disappointment that NIJZ and the Ministry of Health have not yet developed a strategy for autumn and winter. However, she thinks that the government is hesitating to take measures, because it is more than obvious that it will take similar, if not the same, measures as Janša’s government, which will only admit that the opposition to the measures in the past two years was only political propaganda against the government of the day. At the same time, she mentioned that the procedures for taking measures have become complicated with the recent adoption of the amendment to the Act on Infectious Diseases, as now proposed measures by the government must be approved by the National Assembly, which represents an additional bureaucratic obstacle, and on top of all this, the lack of trust in the government on the part of coalition MPs has an impact on all of this.
Referendum initiatives were brought because of serious issues, it is right that the people decide
The SDS party submitted three referendum initiatives, and the Prime Minister accused them of abusing the referendum legislation with the aim of stopping the executive or legislative power. Godec reminded that the law on the government provides for the expansion of the number of ministries from fifteen to twenty, which means more taxpayers’ money for the implementation of state services and thus less for projects that are important for the development of the country. The next problematic issue is the amendment to the long-term care law, which foresees a delay in the implementation of the long-term care law, which was adopted during Janša’s government, by a year, which means depriving people of care during this time.
“The Act on RTV excludes viewers who are payers of this public service from management decision-making. Proponents of the law emphasise that according to the amendment to the law, the RTV Council will be a non-political body. It is pure deception. The members of the envisaged new council will be appointed on the proposal of, for example, the National Council for Culture, and the members of the latter are appointed by the National Assembly on the proposal of the government. Is that not political,” commented Godec, adding that these are just some of the issues for which we in SDS submitted proposals for a referendum, because it is right that the people decide on this.
“I do not understand how government representatives do not react to this”
“This government, headed by the Minister of the Interior, is not solving the migrant problem at all, but is only deepening it with actions such as the removal of razor wire at the border,” says Godec, who finds it incredible how she is consciously opening the borders to illegal migrants, thereby exposing all citizens and the entire European Union, which is already considering measures against Slovenia, to danger and endangering public order and their property. She said with regret that we are once again witnessing stories of migrants walking around villages uncontrollably and in large groups, knocking on the doors of homes and destroying their property.
Regarding Janša’s announcement for the interpellation of Tatjana Bobnar Godec said that the ministers are not only responsible for the decisions and positions of the government, their implementation and for their decisions in the management of the ministries, but also for the omission of the measures that they should have taken, i.e., allowing the duty to act. “That is why they also swore to respect the constitutional order, act according to their conscience and work with all their strength for the welfare of Slovenia. If someone does not respect the constitutional order or legal provisions, if he acts against the state and the rights of citizens, one of the instruments for alerting the opposition to violations is interpellation against an individual minister or constitutional accusation against the Prime Minister. And in SDS, we will respond to any such violation without a doubt.”
It is necessary to set priorities
While Slovenia is facing a food and energy crisis, with a new wave of the coronavirus epidemic, with an increased number of illegal border crossings due to the unreasonable move of the government regarding the removal of the wire fence on the border, the ruling politics and its non-governmental satellites deal with pads and tampons, which on a monthly basis levels for an individual woman represent about seven euros of financial costs. In any case, Godec does not deny the high cost, but it is necessary to set priorities at this time.
The deep state is on the surface
“The events of the last few days, i.e., the open recruitment and hiring of journalists from the Necenzurirano.si portal and their family members into government jobs, is absolutely terrifying,” she described the sudden transfers from the Necenzurirano.si portal to the government, and she is also appalled by the public political recruitment of the current Prime Minister. “If until now we have said that the deep state is in the background, the latest actions of the current government are proof that we have apparently had it on the surface for some time,” she is convinced and adds that the current events are proof that the portal was founded and financed with the aim of overthrowing the government of Janez Janša and slandering individuals from the SDS party. This and ethical reasons were the reason for the request to remove the journalist Tomaž Modic from the investigative commission, whereby Godec reminded that in the past he worked indirectly with a state-owned company, which represents the probability that Tomaž Modic may find himself as a witness or examinee in the subject investigation commission.