Opposition has two weeks to say which bills will be abandoned

Lauri Hussar.
Lauri Hussar. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Speaker of the Riigikogu Lauri Hussar (Eesti 200) told ERR that the Board of the Riigikogu expects answers from opposition parties on August 21 regarding which bills and parliamentary questions they are prepared to withdraw.

Hussar said that the Board of the Riigikogu and the Riigikogu's Council of Elders had previously sent questions to the opposition parties, evaluated the responses received, but were unsatisfied; thus, a new letter was sent to the parliamentary groups.

"These (answers) were not quite what we expected, so the Riigikogu leadership decided to send a new letter to the parliamentary groups, asking for clear indications of which questions and bills the groups are willing to withdraw, which ones they are satisfied with a written answer to, and which ones the groups believe are so important that they should be discussed in the Riigikogu's large hall," Hussar said.

The opposition filed hundreds of questions and measures in the spring, and processing them all would mean that parliament's routine business would be significantly disturbed in the autumn.

Hussar said that 332 consultations and 136 drafts were received, "At some point, this quantity will impede the opposition's ability to weigh in on timely issues."

The board gave the political groups until August 21 to answer questions.

Second, the board resolved to call a meeting of the chairs of the parliamentary parties in an effort to find a political solution to the impasse in the Riigikogu. For instance, Martin Helme, the leader of EKRE, has said that EKRE will continue the filibuster in the fall and that no concessions will be made.

According to Hussar, the coalition will not make indiscriminate concessions for the sake of industrial peace in pursuit of a political compromise.

"The issue of political compromise can only be discussed if there is a strong desire to ensure the parliament's operation. Certainly, prospective areas of agreement have nothing to do with amending previously adopted laws. Obviously, that is not the purpose. The opposition's demands must be proportional. The opposition parties' current compromise proposals are not proportional. Moreover, numerous parties have presented positions that are extremely divergent; this is not the way to break the impasse," Hussar said.

Hussar said that the parliamentary party leaders will convene at the end of August or the start of September.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla, Kristina Kersa

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