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Ivan Bartos, co-leader of a center-left coalition formed from the liberal Pirate Party and STAN, a group of mayors and independent candidates, speaks to media after voting during parliamentary election at a polling station in Usti and Labem, Czech Republic, Friday, Oct. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)
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Czech Pirate members vote to join ruling coalition government

A total of 82 percent of the party’s members voted in favor of being in the new government

editor: REMIX NEWS
author: Jakub Fujáček

The Czech Pirate Party does not want to be in opposition. In an online referendum, the Pirates’ members have decided to join the government, with 82 percent of members of the Pirate Party voting in favor. It means that for the first time, the Czech Republic will have a five-party government.

The Pirates confirmed their intention to be one of the five parties in the coalition government. Participation in the party referendum was record-breaking, with a total of 1,082 out of 1,193 members expressing their opinion. Of this number, 888 party members voted in favor of the SPOLU (Together) and PirSTAN coalition agreement, thus approving its willingness to be in the new government.

The opposite result would mean complications for the emerging cabinet. It is not clear how the Pirates’ coalition partner, the Mayors and Independents (STAN), would proceed if the Pirates rejected the coalition agreement. The chairman of the STAN movement, Vít Rakušan, did not want to speculate about this possibility. After finding out the vote results, he expressed his sincere joy and admitted that a different result would have introduced complications.

The future government wants to publish the list of ministers after the candidate for the prime minister, Petr Fiala, visits President Miloš Zeman in the hospital. The Pirates will have three seats in the government. Ivan Bartoš, the party’s chairman, is expected to become the minister for regional development and Jan Lipavský should lead the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The name of the third Pirates minister is yet to be announced.

The leaders of the five parties officially confirmed their joint action by signing a coalition agreement on the day of the first meeting of the new Chamber of Deputies on Nov. 8. However, participation of the Pirates in the government was conditional to ratification in the nationwide forum.