Czech president Zeman too ill to perform duties

Prague, Oct 18 (EFE).- The president of the Czech Republic, Milos Zeman, is too ill to carry out his duties and is unlikely to recover in the coming weeks, the president of the Senate announced Monday citing medical reports.

“In the hospital’s opinion, given the character of President Zeman’s underlying illness, the long-term prognosis of his health condition is highly uncertain and thus the possibility of his return to performing work duties in the coming weeks is evaluated as unlikely,” Milos Vystrcil, president of the Senate, told reporters.

The 77-year-old was admitted to the intensive care unit at a Prague military hospital on October 10 after meeting prime minister Andrej Babis to discuss the results of the general elections.

Vystrcil said parliament would discuss enacting a constitutional clause that transfers the president’s power to other officials.

Zeman’s upcoming duties included the appointment of a new prime minister following elections earlier this month in which a center-right opposition coalition won and is now aiming to form a new government.

The transfer of power has to be endorsed by both houses of parliament, one of which, the lower house, was dissolved following elections and is due to meet for the first time on 8 November.

The new president of the lower house would have the power to appoint the new prime minister.

This atypical situation comes nine days after the legislative elections, in which the center-right Spolu coalition won with 27.7% of votes, defeating the populist government formation of the incumbent prime minister, Andrej Babis, which came second with 27.1% votes.

Details of the Zeman’s diagnosis have not been released. EFE


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