New Czech Public Defender of Rights is Stanislav Křeček
Stanislav Křeček has become the new Public Defender of Rights in the Czech Republic. He won 91 votes in the lower house today in the second round of a secret ballot.
Czech President Zeman's candidate received 91 votes out of 175 votes cast, Martin Kolovratnik, chairman of the parliamentary election commission, told parliamentarians. His rival in the final round had been the Senate nominee, Vít Alexander Schorm, who represents the Czech Government before the European Court of Human Rights.
In the second round Schorm received the support of 53 lawmakers. A total of 88 votes was required for the election to be valid.
The 81-year-old Křeček, who previously was the long-time chair of the Association of Tenants of the Czech Republic, will take the place of Anna Šabatová, the incumbent. Her six-year term will end next week.
The voting for the Public Defender in the lower house is done by secret ballot. According to previous statements made by lower house representatives, Křeček was probably elected by the votes of the governing Association of Dissatisfied Citizens (ANO), its coalition partner the Czech Social Democratic Party (ČSSD), the Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia (KSČM) and the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" party (SPD).
Ivan Bartoš, chair of the Pirate Party, said the outcome is very bad news for the Czech Republic. "The Pirates proposed making this an open, public vote, but we were outvoted on that idea once again," he said.
"In both rounds we voted for candidate Schorm, who was also supported by the Pirate Senators," Bartoš said. "The Czech Republic, and especially its people who need somebody to advocate for them, deserve a dignified ombudsman, not Prague Castle's candidate, somebody who is not even fully apprised of the extent of the office's activities and whose statements show he is unable to set aside his own biases, to say nothing of defending the interest of somebody who is a victim of injustice."
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