Reps: Coalition of Center and Reform parties is politically logical

Mailis Reps.
Mailis Reps. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Ministerial positions have not yet been decided during coalition negotiation talks, the Center Party's chief negotiator Mailis Reps has said, and she does not see a role for herself in the coalition.

Speaking on ETV current affairs show "Esimene studio" on Tuesday evening, Reps said the coalition has not started allocating minister seats yet and denied the Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Justice will not be held by the Center Party.

"Such exclusions make the upcoming allocating more difficult. Kallas has said multiple times that the allocating the seats will come later. The reason is that when you do it proportionately, then excluding something means raising the stakes for another position. There are the power ministries, ministries of finance, soft ministries and small ministries and they have to be divided proportionately when we speak about an equal union," Reps explained. 

Reps does not see a place for herself in the coalition.

"I confirm I have not even imagined myself in any position. This is for two reasons: firstly, you cannot be in coalition negotiations when you have imagined what seats could be in the hands of one party and what seats in the hands of the other. And secondly, it has to be said, I am subject to proceedings and I have to decide which position I will be taking," Reps said.

Speaking about forming a coalition with the Reform Party, Reps said that this is the most logical solution for everybody.

"A coalition operating by the political logic would be a coalition formed by the Reform Party and the Center Party, there is no question, two big parties, a wish to operate, to find a common ground. It is no secret that in the triple alliance, which would have been an alternative - the Reform Party, the Social Democratic Party and Isamaa Party - a certain tension has built up from previous times," Reps said.

Reps said, so far, the new coalition has not faced any difficulties but they have had to narrow down subjects for discussion because it is not possible to solve everything in the next two years before the government elections. 

'Political Parties Financing Surveillance Committee's proceedings haven't been convenient'

Earlier this week, the Center Party told the Riigikogu's Constitutional Committee it will remove the party's signature from the bill to terminate the Political Parties Financing Surveillance Committee (ERJK). 

Reps did not confirm chairman of Isamaa Helir-Valdor Seeder's claim that Reps was the one who brought the bill to the table but admitted that how ERJK has operated, has been disturbing. 

"To be truthful, ERJK's proceedings towards the Center Party have not been convenient for us. But an attempt to remove it? No," Reps said.

Reps said the bill to disband the ERJK was withdrawn so coalition negotiations could continue undisturbed.

"It is clear that we are facing the rule of law and corruption in the negotiations. The Center Party can only move forward if we are also really ready to deal with this issue," she said. 

Reps said that the alleged corruption related to Porto Franco is also being taken very seriously. "The fact that we are no longer the prime minister's party shows we have taken this accusation extremely seriously. It is an extremely unfortunate case, absolutely, of course," Reps said.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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