Karilaid throws hat in ring for Center Party chairmanship ({{commentsTotal}})

Center Party MP Jaanus Karilaid said he will challenge long-serving chairman Edgar Savisaar and Kadri Simson in the party's internal leadership elections at the end of the month.

He told Postimees in an interview that party members pressured him to put his name forward.

“Kadri Simson's reform plans are too tepid. Kadri has shown her incapable of criticizing the party,” he said, adding that head of the party must keep the party's heritage intact and build on it. He said the most important questions are how to keep power at the 2017 local elections and how to get into the government.

So far party lines have been split between Savisaar and Simson, with party members in Tallinn supporting Savisaar, and Simson enjoying success in Pärnu. Divisions in the NE of the country, a Center Party stronghold, have been surprisingly undecided as it was expected they would go for Savisaar, who is better known in the Russian-speaking community.

Previously Karilaid had been a strong Savisaar supporter.

Karilaid is a former Haapsalu local politician, the head of the city's council between 2006-2015.

Editor: J.M. Laats