Pevkur: Reform Party has to be able to make friends
Hanno Pevkur, next to Kristen Michal one of the two candidates for the Reform Party’s chairmanship, said at the party’s assembly on Saturday that it needed to be able to more effectively find friends in the future with whom to go on working for the country.
Pevkur said that the election winning party’s present status as an opposition force made it impossible to stand up for the expectations and wishes of its voters.
“It doesn’t have to be this way, let alone remain this way,” Pevkur said in his speech ahead of the vote.
Pevkur pointed out that the Reform Party has been the leading political force in Estonia for almost two decades. “We are trusted, and bright ideas that will take the country forward are expected of us,” Pevkur said.
He added that since at present this expectation was particularly high, it was the party’s duty to meet these expectations.
At the same time, when society changes the Reform Party needed to change with it. Members needed to find cooperation partners also outside their own party. “It is has been just this lack of friends that has been plaguing us. No party can govern the country alone,” he said.
“Being in opposition, now is the right time to rejuvenate our party, and putting into words the tasks that Estonia is faced with,” Pevkur said.
The candidates for the party’s top job at Saturday’s congress were Hanno Pevkur, deputy chairman of Reform and former minister of the interior, and Kristen Michal, head of the party’s parliamentary group and former minister of economic affairs and infrastructure.
Taavi Rõivas, who was ousted from the post of prime minister by the Riigikogu in a no confidence vote in November last year, had announced his resignation as head of the Reform Party already in early December. The announcement came less than two weeks after a new three-party coalition government led by the Center Party replaced Reform in the Estonian government.