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Prime Minister resigns

  • 2009-02-20
  • TBT Staff

The Prime Minister bowed to pressure from ruling coalition parties to step down. (Photo courtesy of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Latvia)

RIGA 's Latvian Prime MinisterIvars Godmanis has informed President Valdis Zatlers that he will resign fromoffice.

"The president has accepted the prime minister's resignation. Next week willstart consultations with parties," the president's press secretary said.

The spokeswoman said the government would still be obligated to fulfill thepresident's Jan. 14 demands, which included restructuring of the governmentinstitutions and administration.

"The government still has to go on working," she said.

The People's Party and Greens and Farmers Union, both members of the rulingcoalition, earlier today urged Godmanis to step down.

"We are sure that in the present economic situation, a government withwider support from the parliament and society is needed to solve the economicproblems," People's Party Chairman Mareks Seglins told journalists onFriday.

Seglins and Greens and Farmers Union Head Augusts Brigmanis told reportersthat a new government must be set up in a week's time. The talks on forming anew government will be held with all the political parties represented in theparliament except For Human Rights in a United Latvia.

Though nobody has yet been put forward to replace the outgoing primeminister, Seglins mentioned Foreign Minister Maris Riekstins as a possiblecandidate.

Zatlers said that he had lost confidence in the Prime Minister after theruling coalition announced that it would not follow through with the governmentrestructuring plan proposed by the People's Party.

Andris Berzins, the head of LPP/LC, Godmanis' party, said that he did notthink it would be possible to form a new government within a week, and that therequest for Godmanis to step down was driven by party politics.

"At present the People's Party is just trying to solve its own interiorproblems. Obviously, it is easier to overthrow Godmanis and then solve theissue about replacement of ministers," he said.