Bulgarian ex-premier Borissov offers coalition but does not want job again

13 June 2024, 13:14

Bulgarian former prime minister Boyko Borissov, leader of the centre-right GERB party
Bulgaria Election Borissov. Picture: PA

He warned there will be a government only if the prime minister is named by his GERB party which won the most votes in the parliamentary election.

Former prime minister Boyko Borissov, whose centre-right GERB party won the most votes in Bulgaria’s parliamentary election, has invited his political opponents to hold talks about forming a new government.

Speaking to reporters at his party’s headquarters, he said he does not want to be premier again, but warned there will be a government only if the prime minister is named by his party.

Mr Borissov proposed the formation of an expert Cabinet, but insisted that the ministries of foreign affairs and defence should also be led by GERB politicians.

He said that if these conditions are not met and the other parties are thinking of revenge and avoid dialogue, Bulgaria will head to another election in September.

Bulgaria Election Borissov
Boyko Borissov said he does not want to be Bulgaria’s premier again, but warned there will be a government only if the prime minister is named by his GERB party (Valentina Petrova/AP)

Results from Sunday’s election showed GERB with 24.7% of the vote, edging out the ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms, which surprisingly came in second with 17.1%, ahead of the pro-Western reformist bloc led by the We Continue The Change party with 14.3%.

Four other parties also gained seats in the 240-seat chamber, according to official results.

Mr Borissov led three governments between 2009 and early 2021, when his third Cabinet resigned amid major anti-corruption protests.

The reformist We Continue The Change party-led coalition, which was created a couple of years ago with the aim of opposing and defeating Mr Borissov’s corruption-tainted government, announced on Thursday that it would not support a Cabinet with the participation of GERB.

After running neck and neck in last July’s election, the two rival groups sought to break the political stalemate by forming an uneasy governing coalition, but it survived only nine months.

In heated campaigning for the latest election, both parties levelled charges of corruption against each other, and analysts saw little chance of the two trying to work together again.

On Thursday, the leader of the reformist group, Kiril Petkov, rejected Mr Borissov’s proposal, saying they will be a “firm opposition”.

By Press Association

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