Estonia: Tonis Lukas undecided about going to parliament

  • 2019-03-05
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Tonis Lukas, veteran politician of the Isamaa party and former Estonian minister of education, garnered 2,505 votes in the general elections as well as a mandate in the parliament, but has not yet decided if he is to take up a seat in the Riigikogu, Tartu Postimees, edition of Postimees for South Estonia, reported.

Lukas said on Monday that he has not yet submitted his resignation at his current position as director of the Tartu Kutsehariduskeskus vocational school and has decided to await further information regarding coalition talks. Lukas added that he leans towards joining the parliament as he is interested in taking part of the Riigikogu's work.

"I have a practical sense, I have been doing real-life things my whole life and I would be interested in taking part of the government's work. My calling is patriotic upbringing and educating young people. It is possible to put those things in motion at the Tartu Kutsehariduskeskus vocational school, too, but if there is an opportunity to do it in politics, then I will make use of it," the member of Isamaa said.

"I have definitely not made a decision yet not to go to the parliament and to stay in Tartu vocational school instead. I will await the results of the coalition talks," he added.

Lukas has been criticized for claiming he had no political ambitions when he put himself forward for the director's position at the Tartu Kutsehariduskeskus vocational school.

"Submitting my candidacy is my constitutional right, which was not exercised until the start of December. When I applied for the position of head of Tartu Kutsehariduskeskus, I said that I did not have any plans to go into politics and at the time I did not," Lukas said. "People have been pleased with my work. Would it have made the committee to decide otherwise?"

Deputy mayor of Tartu Madis Lepajoe, who is responsible for general and vocational education, said that if Lukas decides to leave, a new competition needs to be carried out. 

"It is too soon to tell; Tonis said something about not going unless he becomes a minister," Lepajoe said.