Matovic sides with Fico; Bugar left out in the cold

Today the coalition had to withdraw its draft amendment to the controversial Citizenship Act, after its ranks split when Igor Matovic and his Obycajni Ludia colleagues voted against the draft, which deals with the issue of dual citizenship.

Slovak parliament (c) The Daily

Matovic voted together with the support of opposition party Smer-SD to push through a revision proposal. The stale-mate was basically agreed on last night with the coalition so that the law would be deferred and a compromise made in the legislation. Matovic said that this was to create space for an agreement with the coalition.

The proposal of Smer-SD also did not gain the necessary support, even though Matovic voted in favour of it.

The affair obviously did not please head of Most-Hid, Bela Bugar, who said that thanks to the manoeuvre the disputed law introduced by Robert Fico would remain in force, and so the government manifesto would not be fulfilled. Bugar even referred to the possibility of a minority government last night in response to comments made by Matovic that if someone tried to force him to vote against his will, he would become an independent MP.

Robert Fico is happy, though, calling today’s rejection of the coalition’s draft a huge victory for Slovakia, and that it is good that MPs on both benches were willing to put a barrier up against Hungarian PM Orban’s policy.

Last year Orban introduced the option of dual citizenship for ethnic Hungarians in other countries, to which the former government of Robert Fico reacted with its own law, which is still in force.

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