Progressives might propose appointing Ozola as acting mayor of Riga

  • 2023-07-05
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - The For/Progressives (PP) group on Riga City Council might propose appointing Linda Ozola (Code for Riga) as the Latvian capital's acting mayor, councilor Miroslavs Kodis (PP) told LETA. 

The PP group has yet to decide whether to call an extraordinary meeting of Riga City Council or table the proposal at a regular council meeting next week. 

At any rate, Ozola is PP's candidate for acting mayor. 

Kodis described as "questionable" the way Vilnis Kirsis (New Unity) was appointed acting  Riga mayor on Wednesday. 

As reported, Riga Vice Mayor Vilnis Kirsis (New Unity) was appointed acting mayor of Riga after Riga Mayor Martins Stakis' (Progressives/For) resignation was accepted by Riga City Council today.

Riga councilors did not have to vote for Kirsis because, according to the Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry's conclusion, there are three vice-mayors who have the right to mutually agree on appointing one of them an acting mayor of Riga.

Kirsis informed Riga City Council today that the three vice-mayors had agreed that he would be the acting mayor as of today.

As reported, Riga City Council convened for an extraordinary meeting today to accept Stakis' resignation and appoint an acting mayor. A new mayor will be elected later.

LETA also reported, after a conflict over the assessment of Riga's Transport Department, the ruling coalition of the Latvian capital city has split up, prompting Riga Mayor Stakis to resign.

It has also been reported that existing partners in the Riga City Council coalition - New Unity, NA/LRA and KR have decided to kickstart talks on a new coalition, but demand that For/Progressives retract what they see as "false allegations".

As Riga Vice Mayor Vilnis Kirsis (New Unity) said at a news conference Monday, New Unity, NA/LRA and KR believe that For/Progressives must retract their allegations about covering up the embezzlement of EUR 7 million at the city's Transport Department, a failure to pave streets in Riga, coalition partners' deceitful conduct, etc.

The coalition partners believe that a new coalition in Riga can be formed and the municipality's ongoing projects continued by working in a collegial manner and putting national interest first. They also consider Riga Mayor Martins Stakis' decision to stand down to contravene national interests as it threatens the stability of the city council.

According to the coalition partners, councilors must do everything possible to avert snap elections, which they fear can lead to "anti-Latvian parties coming to power in the capital city". New Unity, NA/LRA and KR have therefore decided to take the initiative and kickstart talks on a new coalition.

Stakis announced his resignation as Riga mayor on Monday.

At a news conference, the mayor explained that he can no longer take responsibility for decisions of the Riga City Council.