Lithuanian MPs resume push for inquiry into President Grybauskaitė actions

Dalia Grybauskaitė
DELFI / Domantas Pipas

The governing parties in the Lithuanian parliament are renewing their effort to have a commission scrutinize President Dalia Grybauskaitė‘s actions, even though the opposition believes it is just score-settling after the president’s criticism of the government.

In April, members of the Seimas voted on appointing a parliamentary commission to look into what they said was President Grybauskaitė’s high-handedness and use of law enforcement agencies and criminal intelligence for political goals.

However, the effort was dropped after the so-called Liberal scandal hit in mid-May, when the leader of the second-biggest opposition party came under suspicion of corruption.

Social Democrat Prime Minister Alfirdas Butkevičius then said it would be irresponsible to push on with the parliamentary enquiry which could further destabilize Lithuania’s political situation.

However, then came President Grybauskaitė’s annual state of the nation address, in which her criticism of the government was much harsher than her remarks on the corruption allegations against the liberals.

MP Algirdas Sysas, a social democrat, now says that parliament will vote once again on forming the commission.

“This matter was stopped by the Liberal scandal, allegedly so as not to shake the political life even more. But now we need to finish this issue, since there’s only one vote left [to designate the commission]. We cannot leave it just hanging there,” Sysas, who is a deputy-speaker of the Seimas, said.

He added that the commission could hold its meetings during the summer, if need be, to finish its work before the end of the current parliamentary term.

However, not all parties of the ruling coalition back the initiative. The Labour Party says it will not vote either for or against appointing the commission, but will delegate its members to it, if it comes to pass.

Meanwhile the opposition strongly opposes the move.

“We will definitely not support the appointment of the commission, since it is a completely irrational idea, just an attempt to get back at President Grybauskaitė. The desire of the ruling parties to form the commission appears whenever she says something critical about them,” said opposition leader, conservative Andrius Kubilius.

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