President Zeman and President-Elect Pavel To Meet In Lany on 13 February
Pavel wants to ask Zeman to make no more crucial decisions until the end of his mandate. Photo credit: General Pavel, via Facebook.
Prague, Feb 3 (CTK) – Outgoing Czech President Milos Zeman and his successor, President-elect Petr Pavel, will meet in the Lany presidential residence near Prague on Monday, 13 February at 11am, Pavel said at a press conference today. He added that he had proposed the date to Zeman, who accepted it.
Simultaneously, Zeman’s spokesman Jiri Ovcacek confirmed the date of the meeting on Twitter.
In recent days, both Zeman and Pavel said they were ready to meet each other, but each expected the other side to initiate the meeting. Zeman’s term expires on 8 March, and Pavel is due to be inaugurated on 9 March.
Pavel previously said he wants to ask Zeman, among other things, to make no more crucial decisions until the end of his mandate.
He wants to urge Zeman not to appoint a new head of the Constitutional Court, which Zeman is considering even though the mandate of the incumbent chairman, Pavel Rychetsky, does not expire until August, five months after Zeman has left office.
“I expect us [the debate] to touch on everything connected with the handing over of the post. I will ask him for maximum openness,” Pavel said.
He said he expects a constructive approach similar to that of recent meetings between the two presidents’ chiefs of staff and spokespeople.
At the press conference, he dismissed accusations he has “overdone” his start as president-elect given that he will not take up the post until 9 March.
“I definitely did not enter the election race to take five weeks leave afterwards,” said Pavel, who defeated ex-PM Andrej Babis in the 27-28 January presidential runoff.
The goal of the meetings he attended this week was to prepare him for starting intensive work immediately after his inauguration. “Their goal was not to show that I will be an activist president, but an active president,” he said.
He rejected suggestions that by meeting ministers, the police president and the head of the counter-intelligence service, he was already pretending to have presidential powers. He said all the meetings were aimed at getting him acquainted with the given officials and boosting his knowledge of their areas of responsibility.
He said his discussions with top constitutional officials were standard procedure, and mostly focused on ideas for future mutual contact and cooperation.