Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš’s populist party loses grip on power in nail-bitingly close election

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According to the Czech Statistical Office, Lady Bebi’s ANO party had the narrowest margin in an attempt to oust her by the two opposition coalitions.

With 98.84% of the votes counted, the centre-right coalition Spolu (together) leads the count with 27.58% of the ballots, followed by Babi’s ANO party with 27.32%, and the centrist Piristan coalition 14.45. with %.

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Spol and Piristan are likely to secure a majority of seats in parliament, which would allow them to form a government without Babi’s ANO party. The Spol coalition led by Petr Fiala.

Piristan coalition leader Ivan Bartos said talks with Spölu “on the prospects of forming a new government” were likely to begin on Saturday.


“Andrez Babi’s dominance is over, and the democratic parties have shown that an era of anarchy will probably be behind us,” Bartos said.

Pre-election opinion polls showed the ANO with a clear lead, but no clear path to a majority in the 200-seat lower house. Centrist opposition coalitions have expressed their willingness to cooperate to oust Babis and his party.

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The results do not give Babi’s ANO party a clear path to a parliamentary majority, and it is possible that the country’s new prime minister could come from the coalition involved.

But complicating matters further, President Milos Zeman, who has thrown his support behind the ANO and Babi, said he would like to try to form a government with the most votes even if there is no clear path to a majority. Would say to a single party.

A new government would also distance the Czech Republic from populist parties in Hungary and Poland, which have come under rapid fire for pushing back the democratic values ​​of the European Union.

During the election, Babi once dubbed “Czech Trump” Due to its vast business empire and populist leanings, it was heavily promoted by some local media outlets on an anti-immigrant and Eurosceptic platform.

The 67-year-old business tycoon also faced challenges from opposition parties over his financial dealings, which he claims represent a conflict of interest.

Pandora’s box of scams

Tight election also comes a few days later Pandora Letter Investigations into controversial financial transactions by Babi and other world leaders. The report claims that the Czech prime minister, before entering politics, secretly transferred $22 million through offshore companies to buy a property on the French Riviera in 2009.

Responding on Twitter, Babik wrote: “There is no case they can pull against me when I am in politics.

“I’ve never done anything illegal or bad, but that doesn’t stop them from trying to defame me again and try to influence the Czech parliamentary elections,” he said.

According to Bloomberg, a businessman who is worth about $3.4 billion, Babik has raided the elite since becoming prime minister in 2017, vowing to crack down on tax avoidance.

But his prime ministership has long been accused of financial irregularities.

In 2019, tens of thousands of Czechs took to the streets in some biggest protest Since the 1989 revolution on Babi’s financial affairs and other issues.
In form of Owner of Agrofert Group Among the food, chemical and media companies, Babi was one of the richest business tycoons in the Czech Republic. In 2017, he placed the business in a trust, as required by law, to continue in his position as finance minister. He became Prime Minister later that year.
but one european commission audit Babik was later found to have violated conflict of interest rules over his control of trust funds linked to Agrofert.

Babik rejected the findings, saying the audit was “manipulative and artificially motivated by professional stitches” from the ranks of opposition parties.

Granthshala Prima’s John Mastini reported from Prague, Granthshala’s Sheena McKenzie wrote in London. Rob Idioles, Vasco Cottovio and Ivana Kottasova contributed to this report


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