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Saturday 22.09.2018 | Name days: Maigurs, Mārica, Māris
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Minister: coalition exists “only on paper”

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Edmunds Sprudzs

The decline of the initiative of the Environment Protection and Regional Development Ministry (EPRDM) to reduce the number of municipal officials and change the status of officials, shows the lack of support the Saeima has for the government, believes Edmunds Sprudzs.

He believes this vote shows that the coalition exists only on paper. He also adds that this is not the first case when initiatives of Reform Party (RP) do not gain recognition from other partners of the coalition.

“There is now a tendency that has reforms that are intended to protect the interests of all Latvian residents to be publicly laughed at and criticized,” – believes Sprudzs.

“We are in a situation when protecting the interests of Latvian residents is not in the interest of the coalition. On top of that, the ministers, officials and municipal and state workers that stand for a transparent and well managed country are being pushed out and laughed at using different instruments of power, only to make sure they do not make it hard to look good,” – adds the minister.

Sprudzs reminds that, just recently, the Cabinet of Ministers supported amendments to the officials’ status law and the initiative to reduce the number of officials. During the entire week’s negotiations with the coalition, there were no indications that both initiative could be declined completely.

“I would like to add that this was the coalition’s initiated draft, which was approved on the government meeting with no significant objections,” – notes the minister.

“The matter of the reduction of the number of officials does not concern numbers, but rather the principle – effectively managed municipalities that will allow an official to work in the entire region, not just in the interests of specific territories. But it seems as though most of the Saeima officials continue to lobby and prefer to stay with the same often employed principle when every city council member and every region thinks only about their own interests and does not want to look at the general region development problems,” – says Sprudzs.

The minister adds that the amendments to the Officials Status Law were supposed to make sure that the duty of a city council official is no longer considered a mere hobby.

“The definition – to perform the duties of a municipal official during “free time outside of work” is absurd if we want to achieve real action and results. But it seems that Saeima officials do not fully understand what it means to be an official of a city council,” – he concludes.

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