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Latvia fails to appoint prime minister for more than a month, as candidates refuse

Latvian Finance Minister Jānis Reirs. Photo: tvnet. lv

President of Latvia Raimonds Vējonis has suggested Finance Minister Jānis Reirs, first, and then Valmiera Mayor Jānis Baiks to become candidates for prime minister. Reirs and Baiks refused from such honor after much thoughts, according to an EADaily correspondent.

It is now more than a month since Prime Minister Laimdota Straujuma (the Unity party) resigned on December 7, but the ruling coalition still fails to find a new prime minister. On December 30, President Vējonis said he would seize the initiative and nominate a candidate for prime minister. At first, the president decided that Finance Minister Jānis Reirs (Unity) could head the government, but the minister said he would prefer retaining his current position. Afterwards, the president offered Valmiera Mayor Janis Baiks of the “For Valmiera and Vidzeme” party (affiliated to the Unity party) to become a PM candidate. However, Baiks said in a tweet after a while that he would like “to stay and work for the good of Valmiera and its people."

Speaking on the Latvian Radio-4, Laimdota Straujuma commented on the situation saying “many have been named (possible candidates for prime minister – EADaily) just to make a fuss.” Straujuma said she is sure there are many proper candidates for that post in the Unity Party. 

She called the process of government formation in the country “dreadful.”  In her words, some of the candidates did not even know that they are nominated as prime minister. “For instance, Reirs told me he found his name among the possible candidates in the news while he was in America,” Straujuma said. At the same time, the ex-prime minister who had been harshly criticized for their activity as prime minister throughout the past year said she has no intention to take the prime minister’s post again.  Announcing her resignation, Straujuma said there is a need for “new ideas, a new contribution and a new energy” to run the country.

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